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[pop-yuh-leyt] /ˈpɒp yəˌleɪt/
verb (used with object), populated, populating.
to inhabit; live in; be the inhabitants of.
to furnish with inhabitants, as by colonization; people.
Origin of populate
1570-80; < Medieval Latin populātus, past participle of populāre to inhabit. See people, -ate1
Related forms
outpopulate, verb (used with object), outpopulated, outpopulating.
repopulate, verb (used with object), repopulated, repopulating.
superpopulated, adjective
underpopulate, verb (used with object), underpopulated, underpopulating.
unpopulated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for populated
  • Wild polio virus remains at large generally in poor, densely populated areas or violence-torn places.
  • They destroy there homes when they get over populated and there is not enough feed for them let alone cattle or sheep.
  • It won't care a jot if it is populated by human beings.
  • City dwellers may handle pressure differently from those who live in less populated areas.
  • Until you get almost on top of the city, the countryside is quite sparsely populated.
  • And wireless can't handle email and voice in a densely populated area, let alone video.
  • Science fiction often envisions worlds populated by humanoid robots.
  • Many programmers are creating on their desktops virtual environments populated with simulated animals.
  • They also suggest the possibility of a distant planet populated by spoon life-forms, to which the spoons somehow migrated.
  • He created an artificial world populated with two kinds of agents: citizens and bureaucrats.
British Dictionary definitions for populated


verb (transitive)
(often passive) to live in; inhabit
to provide a population for; colonize or people
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin populāre to provide with inhabitants, from Latin populus people
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 populated



1610s, from Medieval Latin populatus, past participle of populare "inhabit, to people," from Latin populus "inhabitants, people, nation" (see people (n.)). Related: Populated; populating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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