• synonyms


[verb sach-uh-reyt; adjective, noun sach-er-it, -uh-reyt]
verb (used with object), sat·u·rat·ed, sat·u·rat·ing.
  1. to cause (a substance) to unite with the greatest possible amount of another substance, through solution, chemical combination, or the like.
  2. to charge to the utmost, as with magnetism.
  3. to soak, impregnate, or imbue thoroughly or completely: to saturate a sponge with water; a town saturated with charm.
  4. to destroy (a target) completely with bombs and missiles.
  5. to send so many planes over (a target area) that the defensive electronic tracking equipment becomes ineffective.
  6. to furnish (a market) with goods to its full purchasing capacity.
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verb (used without object), sat·u·rat·ed, sat·u·rat·ing.
  1. to become saturated.
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  1. saturated.
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  1. a saturated fat or fatty acid.
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Origin of saturate

1530–40; < Latin saturātus (past participle of saturāre to fill), equivalent to satur- full, well-fed (see sad) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsde·sat·u·rate, verb (used with object), de·sat·u·rat·ed, de·sat·u·rat·ing.o·ver·sat·u·rate, verb (used with object), o·ver·sat·u·rat·ed, o·ver·sat·u·rat·ing.

Synonyms for saturate

3. See wet.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for desaturate


verb (ˈsætʃəˌreɪt)
  1. to fill, soak, or imbue totally
  2. to make (a chemical compound, vapour, solution, magnetic material, etc) saturated or (of a compound, vapour, etc) to become saturated
  3. (tr) military to bomb or shell heavily
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adjective (ˈsætʃərɪt, -ˌreɪt)
  1. a less common word for saturated
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Derived Formssaturater or saturator, noun

Word Origin for saturate

C16: from Latin saturāre, from satur sated, from satis enough
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 desaturate



1530s, "to satisfy, satiate," from Latin saturatus, past participle of saturare "to fill full, sate, drench," from satur "sated, full," from PIE root *sa- "to satisfy" (see sad). Meaning "soak thoroughly" first recorded 1756. Marketing sense first recorded 1958. Related: Saturated; saturating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

desaturate in Medicine


  1. To imbue or impregnate thoroughly.
  2. To soak, fill, or load to capacity.
  3. To cause a substance to unite with the greatest possible amount of another substance.
  4. To satisfy all the chemical affinities of a substance; neutralize.
  5. To dissolve a substance up to that concentration beyond which the addition of more results in a second phase.
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Related formssatu•ra•ble (săchər-ə-bəl) adj.satu•ra′tor n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.