noun Usually cates. Archaic.

a choice food;delicacy; dainty.

Origin of cate

1425–75; back formation from late Middle English cates, aphetic variant of Middle English acates things bought, plural of acat buying < Old North French, derivative of acater to buy < Vulgar Latin *accaptāre, equivalent to Latin ac- ac- + captāre to seek out; see catch Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cates

Contemporary Examples of cates

Historical Examples of cates

  • And here may be noted the average negro's indifference to cates.

  • Mrs. Cates had left them alone, but in half an hour she came back.

  • There was hot bread, too, and sundry ‘cates’ which would now be strange to our eyes.

    Cakes &amp; Ale

    Edward Spencer

  • He had brought her cates to eat, or he would have beaten her into loving him.

    The Fifth Queen

    Ford Madox Ford

  • We have eaten salt together, to say nothing of pigeon pie and other cates.

    The Vanishing Man

    R. Austin Freeman

British Dictionary definitions for cates


pl n

(sometimes singular) archaic choice dainty food; delicacies

Word Origin for cates

C15: variant of acates purchases, from Old Northern French acater to buy, from Vulgar Latin accaptāre (unattested); ultimately related to Latin acceptāre to accept
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