soaked, impregnated, or imbued thoroughly; charged thoroughly or completely; brought to a state of saturation.
(of colors) of maximum chroma or purity; of the highest intensity of hue; free from admixture of white.
  1. (of a solution) containing the maximum amount of solute capable of being dissolved under given conditions.
  2. (of an organic compound) containing no double or triple bonds; having each single bond attached to an atom or group.
  3. (of an inorganic compound) having no free valence electrons.

Origin of saturated

First recorded in 1660–70; saturate + -ed2
Related formsnon·sat·u·rat·ed, adjectivesub·sat·u·rat·ed, adjective


[verb sach-uh-reyt; adjective, noun sach-er-it, -uh-reyt]

verb (used with object), sat·u·rat·ed, sat·u·rat·ing.

to cause (a substance) to unite with the greatest possible amount of another substance, through solution, chemical combination, or the like.
to charge to the utmost, as with magnetism.
to soak, impregnate, or imbue thoroughly or completely: to saturate a sponge with water; a town saturated with charm.
to destroy (a target) completely with bombs and missiles.
to send so many planes over (a target area) that the defensive electronic tracking equipment becomes ineffective.
to furnish (a market) with goods to its full purchasing capacity.

verb (used without object), sat·u·rat·ed, sat·u·rat·ing.

to become saturated.



a saturated fat or fatty acid.

Origin of saturate

1530–40; < Latin saturātus (past participle of saturāre to fill), equivalent to satur- full, well-fed (see sad) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsde·sat·u·rate, verb (used with object), de·sat·u·rat·ed, de·sat·u·rat·ing.o·ver·sat·u·rate, verb (used with object), o·ver·sat·u·rat·ed, o·ver·sat·u·rat·ing.

Synonyms for saturate

3. See wet. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for saturated

waterlogged, soaked, soggy, sodden, full, impregnate, wet, imbued

Examples from the Web for saturated

Contemporary Examples of saturated

Historical Examples of saturated

  • The air was saturated by it just as water may hold a chemical in solution.

    The Leopard Woman

    Stewart Edward White

  • Distinguished from the Patrician, who was a saturated solution.

  • Then he smelled the strange fabric, saturated with the man-smell.

    White Fang

    Jack London

  • Even for this his travelled lordship, seasoned and saturated, had no laugh.

  • The sun-baked canvas was like a sieve and in a moment both men were saturated.

    The Forbidden Trail

    Honor Willsie

British Dictionary definitions for saturated



(of a solution or solvent) containing the maximum amount of solute that can normally be dissolved at a given temperature and pressureSee also supersaturated
(of a colour) having a large degree of saturation
(of a chemical compound)
  1. containing no multiple bonds and thus being incapable of undergoing additional reactionsa saturated hydrocarbon
  2. containing no unpaired valence electrons
(of a fat, esp an animal fat) containing a high proportion of fatty acids having single bondsSee also polyunsaturated, unsaturated
(of a vapour) containing the equilibrium amount of gaseous material at a given temperature and pressureSee also supersaturated
(of a magnetic material) fully magnetized
extremely wet; soaked


verb (ˈsætʃəˌreɪt)

to fill, soak, or imbue totally
to make (a chemical compound, vapour, solution, magnetic material, etc) saturated or (of a compound, vapour, etc) to become saturated
(tr) military to bomb or shell heavily

adjective (ˈsætʃərɪt, -ˌreɪt)

a less common word for saturated
Derived Formssaturater or saturator, noun

Word Origin for saturate

C16: from Latin saturāre, from satur sated, from satis enough
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 saturated



1530s, "to satisfy, satiate," from Latin saturatus, past participle of saturare "to fill full, sate, drench," from satur "sated, full," from PIE root *sa- "to satisfy" (see sad). Meaning "soak thoroughly" first recorded 1756. Marketing sense first recorded 1958. Related: Saturated; saturating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

saturated in Medicine




Unable to hold or contain more; full.
Soaked with moisture; drenched.
Combined with or containing all the solute that can normally be dissolved at a given temperature.
Having all available valence bonds filled. Used especially of organic compounds.




To imbue or impregnate thoroughly.
To soak, fill, or load to capacity.
To cause a substance to unite with the greatest possible amount of another substance.
To satisfy all the chemical affinities of a substance; neutralize.
To dissolve a substance up to that concentration beyond which the addition of more results in a second phase.
Related formssatu•ra•ble (săchər-ə-bəl) adj.satu•ra′tor n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

saturated in Science



Relating to an organic compound in which all the carbon atoms are joined by single bonds and therefore cannot be combined with any additional atoms or radicals. Propane and cyclopentane are examples of saturated hydrocarbons. Compare unsaturated.
Relating to a solution that is unable to dissolve more of a solute.
Containing as much water vapor as is possible at a given temperature. Air that is saturated has a relative humidity of 100 percent.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.