8 Wintry Words to Defrost Your Vocabulary


[key-ter] /ˈkeɪ tər/
verb (used without object)
to provide food, service, etc., as for a party or wedding:
to cater for a banquet.
to provide or supply what amuses, is desired, or gives pleasure, comfort, etc. (usually followed by to or for):
to cater to popular demand; to cater to an invalid.
verb (used with object)
to provide food and service for:
to cater a party.
1350-1400; v. use of obsolete cater, Middle English catour, aphetic variant of acatour buyer < Anglo-French, equivalent to acat(er) to buy (see cate) + -our -or2
Related forms
cateringly, adverb
uncatered, adjective
uncatering, adjective
2. humor, indulge, please. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for catered
  • The development of a cadre of creative humanities courses that catered to the profession.
  • TV-based videoconferencing is catered to group interactions: business meetings, for example, or connecting with family members.
  • To the rest of us, it's the seating plan for a catered function.
  • It really irritates me that smug day people are catered to, but there is absolutely no consideration for night people.
  • He remained more intent upon becoming a player and pundit, types to which the network had never catered, than a host or reporter.
  • It is a difference that was once tolerated, even catered for.
  • They were often sited next to palaces and catered for the elite.
  • But the basic needs of the vast majority-for food, water, shelter and rudimentary health care-are already catered for.
  • Includes books, materials, residential sessions and weekly catered dinners.
  • How these different interests should be catered for, and what to do when they conflict, is much debated.
British Dictionary definitions for catered


(intransitive; foll by for or to) to provide what is required or desired (for): to cater for a need, cater to your tastes
when intr, foll by for. to provide food, services, etc (for): we cater for parties, to cater a banquet
Word Origin
C16: from earlier catour purchaser, variant of acatour, from Anglo-Norman acater to buy, ultimately related to Latin acceptāre to accept
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for catered



"provide food for," c.1600, from Middle English catour (n.) "buyer of provisions" (c.1400; late 13c. as a surname), a shortening of Anglo-French achatour "buyer" (Old North French acatour, Old French achatour, 13c., Modern French acheteur), from Old French achater "to buy," originally "to buy provisions," perhaps from Vulgar Latin *accaptare, from Latin ad- "to" + captare "to take, hold," frequentative of capere "to take" (see capable).

Or else from Vulgar Latin *accapitare "to add to one's capital," with second element from verbal stem of Latin caput (genitive capitis); see capital (adj.). Figuratively from 1650s. Related: Catered; catering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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