[ mas-uh-reyt ]
/ ˈmæs əˌreɪt /

verb (used with object), mac·er·at·ed, mac·er·at·ing.

to soften or separate into parts by steeping in a liquid.
to soften or decompose (food) by the action of a solvent.
to cause to grow thin.

verb (used without object), mac·er·at·ed, mac·er·at·ing.

to undergo maceration.
to become thin or emaciated; waste away.

Nearby words

  1. macedonia,
  2. macedonian,
  3. maceió,
  4. macer,
  5. maceral,
  6. maceration,
  7. macewen's sign,
  8. macewen's triangle,
  9. macfarlane,
  10. macgillicuddy's reeks

Origin of macerate

1540–50; < Latin mācerātus (past participle of mācerāre to make soft, weaken, steep); see -ate1

Related formsmac·er·at·er, mac·er·a·tor, nounmac·er·a·tive, adjectiveun·mac·er·at·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for macerate

British Dictionary definitions for macerate


/ (ˈmæsəˌreɪt) /


to soften or separate or be softened or separated as a result of soaking
to break up or cause to break up by soakingmacerated peaches
to become or cause to become thin
Derived Formsmacerater or macerator, nounmacerative, adjectivemaceration, noun

Word Origin for macerate

C16: from Latin mācerāre to soften

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 macerate



late 15c., a back-formation from maceration or else from Latin maceratus, past participle of macerare "soften, make soft, soak, steep," related to maceria "garden wall," originally "of kneaded clay," from PIE *mak-ero-, suffixed form of root *mag- "to knead" (cf. Greek magis "kneaded mass, cake," mageus "one who kneads, baker;" Old Church Slavonic mazo "to anoint, smear;" Breton meza "to knead;" Middle Irish maistir "to churn"), also "to fashion, fit" (cf. make (v.)). Related: Macerated; macerating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for macerate


[ măsə-rāt′ ]


To make soft by soaking or steeping in a liquid.
To separate into constituents by soaking.


A substance prepared or produced by macerating.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.