• synonyms


verb (used without object), ger·mi·nat·ed, ger·mi·nat·ing.
  1. to begin to grow or develop.
  2. Botany.
    1. to develop into a plant or individual, as a seed, spore, or bulb.
    2. to put forth shoots; sprout; pullulate.
  3. to come into existence; begin.
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verb (used with object), ger·mi·nat·ed, ger·mi·nat·ing.
  1. to cause to develop; produce.
  2. to cause to come into existence; create.
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Origin of germinate

1600–10; < Latin germinātus (past participle of germināre to sprout, bud), equivalent to germin- (see germinal) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsger·mi·na·ble [jur-muh-nuh-buh l] /ˈdʒɜr mə nə bəl/, adjectiveger·mi·na·tion, nounger·mi·na·tor, nounnon·ger·mi·nat·ing, adjectivenon·ger·mi·na·tion, nounre·ger·mi·nate, verb, re·ger·mi·nat·ed, re·ger·mi·nat·ing.re·ger·mi·na·tion, nounun·ger·mi·nat·ed, adjectiveun·ger·mi·nat·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ungerminated

Historical Examples of ungerminated

  • The first form is found in the cells of ungerminated seeds, in leaves, shoots, etc.

    The Chemistry of Plant Life

    Roscoe Wilfred Thatcher

British Dictionary definitions for ungerminated


  1. to cause (seeds or spores) to sprout or (of seeds or spores) to sprout or form new tissue following increased metabolism
  2. to grow or cause to grow; develop
  3. to come or bring into existence; originatethe idea germinated with me
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Derived Formsgerminable or germinative, adjectivegermination, noungerminator, noun

Word Origin for germinate

C17: from Latin germināre to sprout; see germ
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 ungerminated



c.1600, probably a back-formation from germination. Earlier germynen (mid-15c.) was from Latin germinare. Figurative use from 1640s. Related: Germinated; germinating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper