from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To grow or sprout as a plant does.
  • intransitive verb Medicine To grow pathologically on a body part, as a wartlike lesion on a heart valve.
  • intransitive verb To exist in a state of physical or mental inactivity.
  • intransitive verb To engage in relaxing or passive activities, such as watching television.
  • intransitive verb To grow over or cover with vegetation.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • In pathology, to grow in the form of an excrescence.
  • Same as sprout, 5.
  • To grow in the manner of plants; fulfil vegetable functions.
  • Hence To live an idle, unthinking, useless life; have a mere inactive physical existence; live on without material or intellectual achievement.
  • To cause to vegetate or grow.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • intransitive verb To grow, as plants, by nutriment imbibed by means of roots and leaves; to start into growth; to sprout; to germinate.
  • intransitive verb Fig.: To lead a life too low for an animate creature; to do nothing but eat and grow.
  • intransitive verb (Med.) To grow exuberantly; to produce fleshy or warty outgrowths.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb of a plant To grow or sprout.
  • verb of a wart, etc. To spread abnormally.
  • verb informal To live or spend a period of time in a dull, inactive, un-challenging way.

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

  • verb produce vegetation
  • verb engage in passive relaxation
  • verb establish vegetation on
  • verb grow like a plant
  • verb propagate asexually
  • verb lead a passive existence without using one's body or mind
  • verb grow or spread abnormally


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

[Latin vegetāre, vegetāt-, to enliven; see vegetable.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin vegetatum, past participle of vegeto ("I enliven, I arouse")



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  • strangely, i thought this word was germane to the word vegetation

    April 11, 2008

  • intransitive v. To exist in a state of physical or mental inactivity or insensibility.

    I thought that it would doubtless be more to the purpose to try and help my comrades as a doctor than to vegetate or finally lose my life as the unproductive laborer that I was then.

    "Others merely live, I vegetate"

    Source: The times Literary supplement

    January 21, 2018