See more synonyms for populate on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), pop·u·lat·ed, pop·u·lat·ing.
  1. to inhabit; live in; be the inhabitants of.
  2. to furnish with inhabitants, as by colonization; people.

Origin of populate

1570–80; < Medieval Latin populātus, past participle of populāre to inhabit. See people, -ate1
Related formsout·pop·u·late, verb (used with object), out·pop·u·lat·ed, out·pop·u·lat·ing.re·pop·u·late, verb (used with object), re·pop·u·lat·ed, re·pop·u·lat·ing.su·per·pop·u·lat·ed, adjectiveun·der·pop·u·late, verb (used with object), un·der·pop·u·lat·ed, un·der·pop·u·lat·ing.un·pop·u·lat·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for populated

occupy, inhabit, colonize, live, settle, people

Examples from the Web for populated

Contemporary Examples of populated

Historical Examples of populated

  • It has populated the mountains and the plains of our own country.

    Ancient Man

    Hendrik Willem van Loon

  • Third, some escapees from Ardu reached and populated the world Ardry.

    Masters of Space

    Edward Elmer Smith

  • Their world is not populated by men and women, but by a Unity that is Permanent.

    A Preface to Politics

    Walter Lippmann

  • On the frontiers, counties were organized and populated in a season.

    Aladdin &amp; Co.

    Herbert Quick

  • He came not only after God was active, but after men and beasts had populated the world.

British Dictionary definitions for populated


verb (tr)
  1. (often passive) to live in; inhabit
  2. to provide a population for; colonize or people

Word Origin for populate

C16: from Medieval Latin populāre to provide with inhabitants, from Latin populus people
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 populated



1610s, from Medieval Latin populatus, past participle of populare "inhabit, to people," from Latin populus "inhabitants, people, nation" (see people (n.)). Related: Populated; populating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper