Help Wordnik hunt for a million missing words by backing our Kickstarter!


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To chew (food).
  • transitive v. To grind and knead (rubber, for example) into a pulp.
  • intransitive v. To chew food.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To chew (food).
  • v. To grind or knead something into a pulp.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To grind or crush with, or as with, the teeth and prepare for swallowing and digestion; to chew.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To grind with the teeth, and prepare for swallowing and digestion; chew: as, to masticate food.
  • To prepare for use by cutting or kneading, as with a masticator.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. grind and knead
  • v. chew (food); to bite and grind with the teeth


Late Latin masticāre, masticāt-, to masticate, from Greek mastikhān, to grind the teeth.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From the past participle stem of post-Classical Latin masticō ("I chew"), from Ancient Greek μαστιχάω (mastikhaō, "I grind the teeth"). (Wiktionary)



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.