[ mas-ti-keyt ]
/ 藞m忙s t瑟藢ke瑟t /
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See synonyms for: masticate / masticated / masticating / mastication on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with or without object), mas路ti路cat路ed, mas路ti路cat路ing.
to chew.
to reduce to a pulp by crushing or kneading, as rubber.
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Origin of masticate

First recorded in 1640鈥50; from Late Latin mastic膩tus, past participle of mastic膩re 鈥渢o chew鈥; see mastic, -ate1


Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 漏 Random House, Inc. 2022


What does聽masticate mean?

Masticate is a technical word meaning to chew.

The word masticate is almost always used in a scientific or technical context. In the everyday context of eating, people usually just say chew. The noun form of masticate is mastication, which refers to the act of chewing.

Less commonly, masticate means to reduce to a pulp by crushing or kneading, as is done in the rubber-making process.

Example: When we masticate, saliva is released from glands under the tongue to aid in the process of chewing and swallowing.

Where does聽masticate come from?

Masticate comes from the Late Latin mastic膩re, meaning 鈥渢o chew,鈥 from the Greek mastikhan, 鈥渢o grind the teeth.鈥 The English word mastic derives from the same Greek word and refers to a type of tree and the resin from it that鈥檚 used to make rubber and chewing gum. (The related Greek word mast铆ch膿 means 鈥渃hewing gum.鈥)

In the study of how humans and animals eat (at the least the ones with teeth), the act of breaking down pieces of food with the teeth in order to swallow them is called masticating. We typically don鈥檛 think about it as we鈥檙e doing it, but certain teeth are used for certain foods and stages of the chewing process. And animals with different diets masticate differently鈥carnivores (meat eaters) typically chew up and down, while herbivores (plant eaters) generally chew from side to side. When humans masticate, the most important thing for them to remember is to do it with their mouths closed. And while we鈥檙e using technical words, remember that mastication is followed by deglutition鈥攖he process of swallowing.

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What are some other forms related to masticate?

  • mastication (noun)
  • masticable (adjective)
  • masticator (noun)
  • half-masticated (adjective)

What are some synonyms for masticate?

What are some words that share a root or word element with masticate?聽



What are some words that often get used in discussing masticate?


How is聽masticate used in real life?

Masticate is most commonly used in a scientific or technical way, though people sometimes use it to be funny by choosing a technical word instead of just saying chew.



Try using聽masticate!

Is masticate used properly in the following sentence?

The study of how humans masticate involves examining the anatomy of the mouth, including the teeth and jaw, as well as the tongue and salivary glands.

How to use masticate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for masticate

/ (藞m忙st瑟藢ke瑟t) /

to chew (food)
to reduce (materials such as rubber) to a pulp by crushing, grinding, or kneading

Derived forms of masticate

masticable, adjectivemastication, nounmasticator, noun

Word Origin for masticate

C17: from Late Latin mastic膩re, from Greek mastikhan to grind the teeth
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition 漏 William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 漏 HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012