Definition of salivate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsaləˌvāt/


[no object]
1Secrete saliva, especially in anticipation of food.
Example sentences
  • Having found a way of measuring their salivation in response to food he noticed that the dogs started to salivate before they were given the food.
  • Traditional Cakes & Puddings by Ann Nicol and Hilaire Walden (New Holland, £19.99) will have the dessert devotee salivating wildly.
  • The aroma of the warm bread, the melted cheese on the baked potatoes and her aunt's special stew made her salivate.
1.1 [with object] technical Cause (a person or animal) to produce an unusually copious secretion of saliva.
2Display great relish at the sight or prospect of something: I was fairly salivating at the prospect of a $10 million loan
More example sentences
  • But I'm salivating at the prospect of buying a wireless with DAB which I know will probably be useless where we live but they look cool, as the kids say these days.
  • In a recent interview he had one newspaper salivating at the prospect of Ireland being a role model for the rest of Europe.
  • Rugby fans in Pretoria and Cape Town and indeed throughout the country though are salivating at the prospect of another classic duel between the two most successful teams in the history of the Currie Cup.



Pronunciation: /ˌsaləˈvāSH(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • Vomiting may be preceded by nausea, which is often accompanied by increased autonomic nervous system activity, involving salivation, sweating, pallor, and low blood pressure.
  • Ingestion of Ipomoea muricata (purple moonflower) might cause hallucinations and cholinergic effects such as diaphoresis, salivation, lacrimation, and diarrhea.
  • Symptoms of fluoride toxicity may include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, increased salivation, or increased thirst.


Mid 17th century: from Latin salivat- '(having) produced saliva', from the verb salivare, from saliva (see saliva).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: sal·i·vate

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