See more synonyms for accumulate on
verb (used with object), ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, ac·cu·mu·lat·ing.
  1. to gather or collect, often in gradual degrees; heap up: to accumulate wealth.
verb (used without object), ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, ac·cu·mu·lat·ing.
  1. to gather into a heap, mass, cover, etc.; form a steadily increasing quantity: Snow accumulated in the driveway. His debts kept on accumulating.

Origin of accumulate

1520–30; < Latin accumulātus heaped up (past participle of accumulāre), equivalent to ac- ac- + cumul(us) heap + -ātus -ate1
Related formsac·cu·mu·la·ble, adjectivenon·ac·cu·mu·lat·ing, adjectiveo·ver·ac·cu·mu·late, verb, o·ver·ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, o·ver·ac·cu·mu·lat·ing.pre·ac·cu·mu·late, verb (used with object), pre·ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, pre·ac·cu·mu·lat··ac·cu·mu·late, verb, re·ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, re·ac·cu·mu·lat··per·ac·cu·mu·late, verb (used without object), su·per·ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, su·per·ac·cu·mu·lat·ing.un·ac·cu·mu·la·ble, adjectiveun·ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, adjectivewell-ac·cu·mu·lat·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for accumulate

Contemporary Examples of accumulate

Historical Examples of accumulate

  • The painter can accumulate ugliness, but I do not remember a demon worth the name.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • It would be easy as well as instructive to accumulate examples.

    The Truth About Woman

    C. Gasquoine Hartley

  • Upon the funeral pile they accumulate neither apparel nor perfumes.

  • From time to time it cleans out the dirt and rubbish which accumulate in the hole.

  • The “something” proved to be £2500, which was to accumulate in the hands of trustees.

British Dictionary definitions for accumulate


  1. to gather or become gathered together in an increasing quantity; amass; collect
Derived Formsaccumulable, adjectiveaccumulative, adjectiveaccumulatively, adverbaccumulativeness, noun

Word Origin for accumulate

C16: from Latin accumulātus, past participle of accumulāre to heap up, from cumulus a heap
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for accumulate

1520s, from Latin accumulatus, past participle of accumulare "to heap up" (see accumulation). Related: Accumulated; accumulating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper