- to overrun or inhabit in large numbers, usually so as to be harmful or bothersome; swarm in or over
- to be parasitic in or on (a host)
Origin of infestFrench infester from Classical Latin infestare, to attack, trouble from infestus, hostile from in-, in + Indo-European base an unverified form dhers-, to be bold, attack from source dare
transitive verbin·fest·ed, in·fest·ing, in·fests
- To inhabit or overrun in numbers or quantities large enough to be harmful, threatening, or obnoxious: rats infesting the sewers; streets that were infested with drugs.
- To live as a parasite in or on: livestock that were infested with tapeworms.
Origin of infestMiddle English infesten to distress from Old French infester from Latin īnfestāre from īnfestus hostile ; see gwhedh- in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present infests, present participle infesting, simple past and past participle infested)
(comparative more infest, superlative most infest)