[eyt; British et]
simple past tense of eat.
ate, eight. Unabridged


[ey-tee, ah-tee]
an ancient Greek goddess personifying the fatal blindness or recklessness that produces crime and the divine punishment that follows it.

< Greek, special use of átē reckless impulse, ruin, akin to aáein to mislead, harm


equipment that makes a series of tests automatically.

a(utomatic) t(est) e(quipment)


a suffix occurring in loanwords from Latin, its English distribution paralleling that of Latin. The form originated as a suffix added to a- stem verbs to form adjectives (separate ). The resulting form could also be used independently as a noun (advocate ) and came to be used as a stem on which a verb could be formed (separate; advocate; agitate ). In English the use as a verbal suffix has been extended to stems of non-Latin origin: calibrate; acierate .

< Latin -ātus (masculine), -āta (feminine), -ātum (neuter), equivalent to -ā- thematic vowel + -tus, -ta, -tum past participle suffix


a specialization of -ate1, used to indicate a salt of an acid ending in -ic , added to a form of the stem of the element or group: nitrate; sulfate .
Compare -ite1.

probably originally in New Latin phrases, as plumbum acetātum salt produced by the action of acetic acid on lead


a suffix occurring originally in nouns borrowed from Latin, and in English coinages from Latin bases, that denote offices or functions (consulate; triumvirate; pontificate ), as well as institutions or collective bodies (electorate; senate ); sometimes extended to denote a person who exercises such a function (magistrate; potentate ), an associated place (consulate ), or a period of office or rule (protectorate ). Joined to stems of any origin, ate3, signifies the office, term of office, or territory of a ruler or official (caliphate; khanate; shogunate ).

< Latin -ātus (genitive -ātūs), generalized from v. derivatives, as augurātus office of an augur (augurā(re) to foretell by augury + -tus suffix of v. action), construed as derivative of augur augur


verb (used with object), ate [eyt; especially British et] or (Archaic) eat [et, eet] , eaten or (Archaic) eat [et, eet] , eating.
to take into the mouth and swallow for nourishment; chew and swallow (food).
to consume by or as if by devouring gradually; wear away; corrode: The patient was eaten by disease and pain.
to make (a hole, passage, etc.), as by gnawing or corrosion.
to ravage or devastate: a forest eaten by fire.
to use up, especially wastefully; consume (often followed by up ): Unexpected expenses have been eating up their savings.
to absorb or pay for: The builder had to eat the cost of the repairs.
Slang: Vulgar. to perform cunnilingus or fellatio on.
verb (used without object), ate [eyt; especially British et] or (Archaic) eat [et, eet] , eaten or (Archaic) eat [et, eet] , eating.
to consume food; take a meal: We'll eat at six o'clock.
to make a way, as by gnawing or corrosion: Acid ate through the linoleum.
eats, Informal. food.
Verb phrases
eat away/into, to destroy gradually, as by erosion: For eons, the pounding waves ate away at the shoreline.
eat out, to have a meal at a restaurant rather than at home.
eat up,
to consume wholly.
to show enthusiasm for; take pleasure in: The audience ate up everything he said.
to believe without question.
be eating someone, Informal. to worry, annoy, or bother: Something seems to be eating him—he's been wearing a frown all day.
eat crow. crow1 ( def 7 ).
eat high off the hog. hog ( def 16 ).
eat humble pie. humble pie ( def 3 ).
eat in, to eat or dine at home.
eat one's heart out. heart ( def 26 ).
eat one's terms. term ( def 17 ).
eat one's words. word ( def 16 ).
eat out of one's hand. hand ( def 49 ).
eat someone out of house and home, to eat so much as to strain someone's resources of food or money: A group of hungry teenagers can eat you out of house and home.
eat someone's lunch, Slang. to thoroughly defeat, outdo, injure, etc.
eat the wind out of, Nautical. to blanket (a sailing vessel sailing close-hauled) by sailing close on the weather side of.

before 900; Middle English eten, Old English etan; cognate with German essen, Gothic itan, Latin edere

eater, noun
outeat, verb (used with object), outate, outeaten, outeating.
undereat, verb (used without object), underate, undereaten, undereating. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source Link To ate
World English Dictionary
ate (ɛt, eɪt)
the past tense of eat

Ate (ˈeɪtɪ, ˈɑːtɪ)
Greek myth a goddess who makes men blind so that they will blunder into guilty acts
[C16: via Latin from Greek atē a rash impulse]

1.  (forming adjectives) possessing; having the appearance or characteristics of: fortunate; palmate; Latinate
2.  (forming nouns) a chemical compound, esp a salt or ester of an acid: carbonate; stearate
3.  (forming nouns) the product of a process: condensate
4.  forming verbs from nouns and adjectives: hyphenate; rusticate
[from Latin -ātus, past participial ending of verbs ending in -āre]

suffix forming nouns
denoting office, rank, or a group having a certain function: episcopate; electorate
[from Latin -ātus, suffix (fourth declension) of collective nouns]

eat (iːt)
vb (often foll by into or through) , eats, eating, ate, eaten
1.  to take into the mouth and swallow (food, etc), esp after biting and chewing
2.  (tr; often foll by away or up) to destroy as if by eating: the damp had eaten away the woodwork
3.  (often foll by into) to use up or waste: taxes ate into his inheritance
4.  to make (a hole, passage, etc) by eating or gnawing: rats ate through the floor
5.  to take or have (a meal or meals): we always eat at six
6.  (tr) to include as part of one's diet: he doesn't eat fish
7.  informal (tr) to cause to worry; make anxious: what's eating you?
8.  slang (tr) to perform cunnilingus or fellatio upon
9.  informal I'll eat my hat if I will be greatly surprised if (something happens that proves me wrong)
10.  eat one's heart out to brood or pine with grief or longing
11.  eat one's words to take back something said; recant; retract
12.  eat out of someone's hand to be entirely obedient to someone
13.  eat someone out of house and home to ruin someone, esp one's parent or one's host, by consuming all his food
[Old English etan; related to Gothic itan, Old High German ezzan, Latin edere, Greek edein, Sanskrit admi]

abbreviation for
Tanzania (international car registration)
[from E(ast) A(frica) T(anganyika) or E(ast) A(frica) Z(anzibar)]
abbreviation for
[from E(ast) A(frica) T(anganyika) or E(ast) A(frica) Z(anzibar)]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. etan (class V strong verb; past tense æt, pp. eten), from P.Gmc. *etanan (cf. O.N. eta, Goth. itan, Ger. essen), from PIE base *ed- "to eat" (see edible). Transferred sense of "slow, gradual corrosion or destruction" is from 1550s. Meaning "to preoccupy, engross"
(as in what's eating you?) first recorded 1893. Slang sexual sense of "do cunnilingus on" is first recorded 1927. Eat out "dine away from home" is from 1933. The slang phrase to eat one's words is from 1570s; to eat one's heart out is from 1590s; for eat one's hat, see hat.

p.t. of eat (q.v.).

suffix used in forming nouns from L. words ending in -atus, -atum (e.g. estate, primate, senate). Those that came to Eng. via O.Fr. and M.Fr. often arrived with -at, but an -e was added after c.1400 to indicate the long vowel. The suffix also can mark adjectives formed from L. past participals in -atus,
-ata (e.g. desolate, moderate, separate), again, they often were adopted in M.E. as -at, with an -e appended after c.1400.

verbal suffix for L. verbs in -are. O.E. commonly made verbs from adjectives by adding a verbal ending to the word (e.g. gnornian "be sad, mourn," gnorn "sad, depressed"), but as the inflections wore off English words in late O.E. and M.E., there came to be no difference between the adj. and the verb
in dry, empty, warm, etc. Accustomed to the identity of adjectival and verbal forms of a word, the English, when they began to expand their Latin-based vocabulary after c.1500, simply made verbs from L. pp. adjs. without changing their form (e.g. aggravate, substantiate) and thus it became the custom that L. verbs were Anglicized from their pp. stems.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

-ate suff.

  1. A derivative of a specified chemical compound or element: aluminate.

  2. A salt or ester of a specified acid whose name ends in -ic: acetate.

eat (ēt)
v. ate (āt), eat·en (ēt'n), eat·ing, eats

  1. To take into the body by the mouth for digestion or absorption.

  2. To consume, ravage, or destroy by or as if by ingesting, such as by a disease.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
A suffix used to form the name of a salt or ester of an acid whose name ends in -ic, such as acetate, a salt or ester of acetic acid. Such salts or esters have one oxygen atom more than corresponding salts or esters with names ending in -ite. For example, a sulfate is a salt of sulfuric acid and contains the group SO4, while a sulfite contains SO3. Compare -ite.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
automatic test equipment
  1. earnings after taxes

  2. Tanzania (international vehicle ID)

The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


Greek mythological figure who induced rash and ruinous actions by both gods and men. She made Zeus-on the day he expected the Greek hero Heracles, his son by Alcmene, to be born-take an oath: the child born of his lineage that day would rule "over all those dwelling about him" (Iliad, Book XIX). Zeus's wife, the goddess Hera, implored her daughter Eileithyia, the goddess of childbirth, to delay Heracles' birth and to hasten that of another child of the lineage, Eurystheus, who would therefore become ruler of Mycenae and have Heracles as his subject. Having been deceived, Zeus cast Ate out of Olympus, after which she remained on earth, working evil and mischief. Zeus later sent to earth the Litai ("Prayers"), his old and crippled daughters, who followed Ate and repaired the harm done by her.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
The upshot was that the knockout mice ate considerably more than the normal
Ten thousand years ago hunters and gatherers ate bugs to survive.
Also when organs are donated they then ate sold for profit.
Those people who viewed the streams, or ate up the gossip, also participated.
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