• synonyms


verb (used with object), in·flat·ed, in·flat·ing.
  1. to distend; swell or puff out; dilate: The king cobra inflates its hood.
  2. to cause to expand or distend with air or gas: to inflate a balloon.
  3. to puff up with pride, satisfaction, etc.
  4. to elate.
  5. Economics. to expand (money, prices, an economy, etc.) unduly in amount, value, or size; affect with inflation.
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verb (used without object), in·flat·ed, in·flat·ing.
  1. to become inflated.
  2. to increase, especially suddenly and substantially: The $10 subscription has inflated to $25.
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Origin of inflate

1470–80; < Latin inflātus past participle of inflāre to blow on or into, puff out, equivalent to in- in-2 + flā- blow2 + -tus past participle suffix
Related formsin·flat·er, in·fla·tor, nouno·ver·in·flate, verb (used with object), o·ver·in·flat·ed, o·ver·in·flat·ing.re·in·flate, verb, re·in·flat·ed, re·in·flat·ing.


1. See expand.


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

British Dictionary definitions for over-inflate


  1. to expand or cause to expand by filling with gas or airshe needed to inflate the tyres
  2. (tr) to cause to increase excessively; puff up; swellto inflate one's opinion of oneself
  3. (tr) to cause inflation of (prices, money, etc)
  4. (tr) to raise in spirits; elate
  5. (intr) to undergo economic inflation
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Derived Formsinflatedly, adverbinflatedness, nouninflater or inflator, noun

Word Origin

C16: from Latin inflāre to blow into, from flāre to blow
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 over-inflate



early 15c., "cause to swell," from Latin inflatus, past participle of inflare "to blow into, inflate" (see inflation). Economics sense from 1844. In some senses a back-formation from inflation. Related: Inflatable; inflated; inflating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper