verb (-bated; -bating) Etymology: Latin incubatus, past participle of incubare, from in- + cubare to lie Date: 1641 transitive verb 1. a. to sit on (eggs) so as to hatch by the warmth of the body b. to maintain (as an embryo or a chemically active system) under conditions favorable for hatching, development, or reaction 2. to cause or aid the development of <
incubate an idea
intransitive verb 1. to sit on eggs 2. to undergo incubation ; developincubative adjectiveincubatory adjective

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Incubate — In cu*bate, v. i. & t. [imp. & p. p. {Incubated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Incubating}.] [L. incubatus, p. p. incubare to lie on; pref. in in, on + cubare to lie down. Cf. {Cubit}, {Incumbent}.] 1. To sit, as on eggs for hatching; to brood; to brood upon …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • incubate — (v.) 1640s, to brood upon, watch jealously (which also was a figurative sense of L. incubare); 1721 as to sit on eggs to hatch them, from L. incubatus, pp. of incubare to lie in or upon (see INCUBATION (Cf. incubation)). Related: Incubated;… …   Etymology dictionary

  • incubate — ► VERB 1) (of a bird) sit on (eggs) to keep them warm and bring them to hatching. 2) keep (bacteria, cells, etc.) at a suitable temperature so that they develop. 3) (with reference to an infectious disease) develop slowly without outward or… …   English terms dictionary

  • incubate — [in′kyə bāt΄, iŋ′kyo͞o bāt΄] vt. incubated, incubating [< L incubatus, pp. of incubare, to lie in or upon < in , IN 1 + cubare, to lie: see CUBE1] 1. to sit on and hatch (eggs) 2. to keep (eggs, embryos, bacteria, etc.) in a favorable… …   English World dictionary

  • incubate — UK [ˈɪŋkjʊbeɪt] / US [ˈɪŋkjəˌbeɪt] verb [intransitive/transitive] Word forms incubate : present tense I/you/we/they incubate he/she/it incubates present participle incubating past tense incubated past participle incubated 1) a) biology if a bird… …   English dictionary

  • incubate — in|cu|bate [ ıŋkjə,beıt ] verb intransitive or transitive 1. ) if a bird incubates its eggs, or if they incubate, they are kept warm until the young birds inside come out a ) if you incubate cells, or if they incubate, they are kept at a… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • incubate — [[t]ɪ̱nkjʊbeɪt[/t]] incubates, incubating, incubated 1) VERB When birds incubate their eggs, they keep the eggs warm until the baby birds come out. [V n] The birds returned to their nests and continued to incubate the eggs. [Also V] Derived words …   English dictionary

  • incubate — in|cu|bate [ˈıŋkjubeıt] v [I and T] [Date: 1600 1700; : Latin; Origin: , past participle of incubare to lie on , from cubare to lie ] 1.) if a bird incubates its eggs, or if the eggs incubate, they are kept warm until they ↑hatch (=the birds… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • incubate — verb (I, T) 1 if a bird incubates its eggs or if they incubate, they are kept warm by the bird until the young birds come out 2 (I, T) technical if a disease incubates, or if you incubate it, it develops in your body until you show physical signs …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • incubate — verb a) To brood, raise, or maintain eggs, organisms, or living tissue through the provision of ideal environmental conditions. b) To incubate metaphorically; to ponder an idea slowly and deliberately as if in preparation for hatching it …   Wiktionary

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