- to instigate or foster (discord, rebellion, etc.); promote the growth or development of: to foment trouble; to foment discontent.
- to apply warm water or medicated liquid, ointments, etc., to (the surface of the body).
Origin of foment
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for foment
Given all of this, Iran is apparently disinclined to foment a political rebellion against Maliki among the Shia.How Iran and America Can Beat ISIS Together
Ben Van Heuvelen
June 21, 2014
They can exacerbate splits within a ruling leadership, foment popular unrest, or expedite a dwindling current account.Why Aren’t Sanctions Stopping Putin?
Meghan L. O’Sullivan
May 13, 2014
The Cubans claim Gross was a spy who was trying to foment revolution.Raul Castro Reaches Out to Obama, But Don’t Call It a Thaw
Eli Lake, Josh Rogin
December 11, 2013
We tried to foment one against Hamas after it won democratic elections among the Palestinians in 2006.What Obama Should Have Said
August 15, 2013
He advocates instead quiet support for Iranian opposition groups that could foment regime change.Israel’s Top Iran Expert: You Can’t Out-Negotiate the Mullahs
October 22, 2012
If the limbs be swelled, or joints stiff, it will be proper to foment them with warm vinegar, or bathe them in lukewarm water.
No, Princess; my part is to restore peace, not to foment strife.Manasseh
Foment with warm water; at night apply a bread and milk poultice.
If there is pain in the region of the liver, foment that region more strongly.Papers on Health
Foment the corn every other night in warm water, after which renew the application.The Toilet of Flora
- to encourage or instigate (trouble, discord, etc); stir up
- med to apply heat and moisture to (a part of the body) to relieve pain and inflammation
Word Origin and History for foment
early 15c., "apply hot liquids," from Old French fomenter (13c.) "apply hot compress (to a wound)," from Late Latin fomentare, from Latin fomentum "warm application, poultice," contraction of *fovimentum, from fovere "to warm; cherish, encourage" (see fever). Extended sense of "stimulate, instigate" (1620s) was in the French. Related: Fomented; fomenting.