Definition of osculate in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈäskyəˌlāt/


[with object]
1 Mathematics (Of a curve or surface) touch (another curve or surface) so as to have a common tangent at the point of contact: (as adjective osculating) the plots have been drawn using osculating orbital elements
More example sentences
  • If seven points on a twisted cubic be joined, two and two, by twenty-one lines, then any seven planes that contain these 21 lines will osculate a second cubic curve.
  • Should the students be asked to sketch the osculating circle to a given curve at a given point, and then notice that as the point of contact changes, the radius of the circle is inversely proportional to the measure of curvature?
2 formal or humorous Kiss.
Example sentences
  • As a child I dreaded extended family occasions because of the endless osculating it entailed.
  • None of that endless schlepping up and down the country, pressing sweaty palms with the hoi polloi and osculating their kids.



Pronunciation: /ˈäskyələnt/


Pronunciation: /ˌäskyəˈlāSH(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • In kissing a girl whose experience with osculation is limited, it is a good think to work up to the kissing of the lips.
  • As far as I can tell the only victims are the fighting-cock enthusiasts who have engaged in direct osculation with their birds, in an effort to revive them for the fight.
  • If it and ‘Hogmanay’ share the same root, it may be suggested that the general licence associated with December 31 extended considerably beyond osculation.


Pronunciation: /ˈäskyələˌtôrē/
Example sentences
  • There are several osculatory pecks in the movie - all testifying to the sovereign upper-class hegemony of this amatory field.
  • If you haven't been tutored in the art of osculatory excellence then get yourself over to Anna's site and learn all there is to know to impress that special person in your life!


Mid 17th century: from Latin osculat- 'kissed', from the verb osculari, from osculum 'little mouth or kiss'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: os·cu·late

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.