- to provide food, service, etc., as for a party or wedding: to cater for a banquet.
- to provide or supply what amuses, is desired, or gives pleasure, comfort, etc. (usually followed by to or for): to cater to popular demand; to cater to an invalid.
- to provide food and service for: to cater a party.
Origin of cater
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for cater
And you can expect designers and retailers to cater to them too.Scarlet Is the New Black
August 31, 2014
Department stores opened to cater to an increasingly powerful middle class that no longer felt shy about displaying its wealth.What Lies Beneath: How Lingerie Got Sexy
June 5, 2014
American field kitchens arrived with everything to cater to the raw hunger of battle, including ice cream machines.The Deadly Trap Behind D-Day’s Beaches
June 5, 2014
Of course, sites like Homeaway have been around since 2005, but they cater to a second home clientele.Is Crowdsourced Labor the Future of Middle Class Employment?
March 26, 2014
Gambling in Macau is often set in HKD instead of the local Pataca, and businesses that cater to visitors accept Hong Kong Dollars.Inside China's Underground Black Market Banks
February 26, 2014
The only permanent citizens are the ones who cater to those on the way through.Arm of the Law
Are you going to cater to the whims and prejudices of people?Susan B. Anthony
If he could cater for a month, no expense should be grudged; as for the future, he thrust it from his mind.The Young Duke
When dealing with childish persons you have to cater to their whims.Greener Than You Think
"I can be friends with you, but you can't be friends with me, Cater; it isn't in you to know how," he said.
- (intr; foll by for or to) to provide what is required or desired (for)to cater for a need; cater to your tastes
- (when intr, foll by for) to provide food, services, etc (for)we cater for parties; to cater a banquet
Word Origin and History for cater
"provide food for," c.1600, from Middle English catour (n.) "buyer of provisions" (c.1400; late 13c. as a surname), a shortening of Anglo-French achatour "buyer" (Old North French acatour, Old French achatour, 13c., Modern French acheteur), from Old French achater "to buy," originally "to buy provisions," perhaps from Vulgar Latin *accaptare, from Latin ad- "to" + captare "to take, hold," frequentative of capere "to take" (see capable).
Or else from Vulgar Latin *accapitare "to add to one's capital," with second element from verbal stem of Latin caput (genitive capitis); see capital (adj.). Figuratively from 1650s. Related: Catered; catering.