saturate[sac̸h′ə rāt′; for adj., usually, -rit]
- Saturate is to become totally soaked or filled, or to combine two substances to their maximum combining capacity.
- When it rains for days and days and the soil becomes incredibly wet, this is an example of a time when the rain saturates the soil.
- When a negligent power plant dumps toxic waste into the water and the water is contaminated with it, this is an example of a situation where the water is saturated with toxic waste.
- When a company makes so many mp3 players that every single person has one and there is no more market for them, this is an example of a time when the company saturates the market.
transitive verbsaturated, saturating
- to cause to be thoroughly soaked, imbued, or penetrated
- to cause (something) to be filled, charged, supplied, etc. with the maximum that it can absorb
- to cause (a substance) to combine to the full extent of its combining capacity with another; neutralize
- to dissolve the maximum amount of (a gas, liquid, or solid) in a solution at a given temperature and pressure
Origin of saturate; from Classical Latin saturatus, past participle of saturare, to fill up, saturate ; from satur, full; akin to satis: see sad
transitive verbsat·u·rat·ed, sat·u·rat·ing, sat·u·rates
- To soak or fill so that no more liquid may be absorbed: The cloth was saturated with water.
- To supply with the maximum that can be held or contained; fill thoroughly: Pleasant smells saturated the bakery. The species had saturated its habitat. Happy memories saturated his mind. See Synonyms at imbue.
- Chemistry To cause (a substance) to unite with the greatest possible amount of another substance.
- Economics To supply (a market) with a good or service in an amount that consumers are able and willing to purchase.
Origin of saturateLatin saturāre, saturāt-, to fill, from satur, sated; see sā- in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present saturates, present participle saturating, simple past and past participle saturated)
- To cause to become completely penetrated, impregnated, or soaked (especially with a liquid).
- Rain saturated their clothes.
- After walking home in the driving rain, his clothes were saturated.
- To satisfy the affinity of; to cause a substance to become inert by chemical combination with all that it can hold.
- One can saturate phosphorus with chlorine.
From Latin saturatus, perfect passive participle of saturare (“to fill full”), from satur (“full”).