verb (used with object), in·oc·u·lat·ed, in·oc·u·lat·ing.

to implant (a disease agent or antigen) in a person, animal, or plant to produce a disease for study or to stimulate disease resistance.
to affect or treat (a person, animal, or plant) in this manner.
to introduce (microorganisms) into surroundings suited to their growth, as a culture medium.
to imbue (a person), as with ideas.
Metallurgy. to treat (molten metal) chemically to strengthen the microstructure.

verb (used without object), in·oc·u·lat·ed, in·oc·u·lat·ing.

to perform inoculation.

Origin of inoculate

1400–50; late Middle English < Latin inoculātus past participle of inoculāre to graft by budding, implant, equivalent to in- in-2 + -oculā- (stem of -oculāre to graft, derivative of oculus eye, bud) + -tus past participle suffix
Related formsin·oc·u·la·tive [ih-nok-yuh-ley-tiv, -yuh-luh-] /ɪˈnɒk yəˌleɪ tɪv, -yə lə-/, adjectivein·oc·u·la·tor, nounnon·in·oc·u·la·tive, adjectivere·in·oc·u·late, verb, re·in·oc·u·lat·ed, re·in·oc·u·lat·ing.self-in·oc·u·lat·ed, adjectiveun·in·oc·u·lat·ed, adjectiveun·in·oc·u·la·tive, adjective

Synonyms for inoculate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for inoculated

vaccinate, inject, protect

Examples from the Web for inoculated

Contemporary Examples of inoculated

Historical Examples of inoculated

  • He it was who inoculated Radville with the habit of buying manufactured candies.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • It was born of the world's sickness, with which the men from the cities had been inoculated.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • He inoculated me with a taste for pictures and good engravings, of which I bought some.

  • Yes,” said I, “you have been inoculated for marriage, and have recovered.

  • It's the only place in the city where one can be inoculated against it, so far as I know.

    The Silent Bullet

    Arthur B. Reeve

British Dictionary definitions for inoculated



to introduce (the causative agent of a disease) into the body of (a person or animal), in order to induce immunity
(tr) to introduce (microorganisms, esp bacteria) into (a culture medium)
(tr) to cause to be influenced or imbued, as with ideas or opinions
Derived Formsinoculation, nouninoculative, adjectiveinoculator, noun

Word Origin for inoculate

C15: from Latin inoculāre to implant, from in- ² + oculus eye, bud
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 inoculated



mid-15c., "implant a bud into a plant," from Latin inoculatus, past participle of inoculare "graft in, implant," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + oculus "bud," originally "eye" (see eye (n.)). Meaning "implant germs of a disease to produce immunity" first recorded (in inoculation) 1714, originally in reference to smallpox. After 1799, often used in sense of "to vaccine inoculate." Related: Inoculated; inoculating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

inoculated in Medicine




To introduce a serum, a vaccine, or an antigenic substance into the body of a person or an animal, especially as a means to produce or boost immunity to a specific disease.
To implant microorganisms or infectious material into or on a culture medium.
To communicate a disease to a living organism by transferring its causative agent into the organism.
Related formsin•ocu•la′tive adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.