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[mas-ti-keyt] /ˈmæs tɪˌkeɪt/
verb (used with object), verb (used without object), masticated, masticating.
to chew.
to reduce to a pulp by crushing or kneading, as rubber.
Origin of masticate
1640-50; < Late Latin masticātus, past participle of masticāre to chew. See mastic, -ate1
Related forms
[mas-ti-kuh-buh l] /ˈmæs tɪ kə bəl/ (Show IPA),
mastication, noun
masticator, noun
half-masticated, adjective
remasticate, verb, remasticated, remasticating.
remastication, noun
unmasticated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for masticate
  • These mixers use tremendous power to literally chew, or masticate, rubber and solid fillers into an acceptable mixture.
  • Cottontail rabbits congregate there, snuffling bits of surface grit to help them masticate dandelions and clover.
  • Wind it up and it looks set to masticate you into a gooey porridge.
  • Mechanical treatments would grind up or masticate undesirable understory vegetation.
  • Used for patients who are unwilling or unable to masticate or swallow food.
  • Whether he has a sufficient number of teeth to masticate his food properly and to tear his cartridge quickly and with ease.
British Dictionary definitions for masticate


to chew (food)
to reduce (materials such as rubber) to a pulp by crushing, grinding, or kneading
Derived Forms
masticable, adjective
mastication, noun
masticator, noun
Word Origin
C17: from Late Latin masticāre, from Greek mastikhan to grind the teeth
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
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Word Origin and History for masticate

1640s, back-formation from mastication, or else from Late Latin masticatus, past participle of masticare "to chew." Related: Masticated; masticating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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masticate in Medicine

masticate mas·ti·cate (mās'tĭ-kāt')
v. mas·ti·cat·ed, mas·ti·cat·ing, mas·ti·cates
To chew food.

mas'ti·ca'tion n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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