• synonyms


[kop-yuh-ley-shuh n]
See more synonyms for copulation on Thesaurus.com
  1. sexual intercourse.
  2. a joining together or coupling.
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Origin of copulation

1350–1400; Middle English copulacion < Latin cōpulātiōn- (stem of copulātio) a binding together. See copulate, -ion
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for copulation

intercourse, procreation, coupling, fornication, lovemaking, intimacy, sex, relations, mating, nooky, coition

Examples from the Web for copulation

Historical Examples of copulation

  • We readily conceive how they appear when left in the female by copulation.

    New observations on the natural history of bees

    Francis Huber

  • Copulation is accomplished without the hive, and in the air.

  • Calling a natural process like copulation a sin doesn't make it so.

    Painted Veils

    James Huneker

  • Copulation of the mother bee, in l'Apiculteur, 6e anne, 1862.

  • No copulation; exterior fecundation of eggs: fish, echinoderms.

Word Origin and History for copulation


late 14c., "coupling," from Middle French copulation "mating, copulation" (14c.), from Latin copulationem (nominative copulatio), noun of action from past participle stem of copulare (see copulate). Of the sex act from late 15c., and this became the main sense from 16c.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

copulation in Medicine


  1. Conjugation between two cells that do not fuse but separate after mutual fertilization.
  2. coitus
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Related formscopu•late′ v.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.