Definition of pullulate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpʌljʊleɪt/


[no object] (often as adjective pullulating)
1Breed or spread prolifically or rapidly: a pullulating little swarm of fish
More example sentences
  • And books, everywhere, sprouting like mushrooms in a greenhouse, pullulating on shelves, in shoots that teeter at navel height like cubist stalagmites.
  • The hardest, foulest, most odious fact of all that he has to acknowledge is that much of his uncle, blood-kin truly, as of his mother, and no doubt his greatly admired father as well, is pullulating in him and in all of us.
  • People have had patches of their skin sterilized: cleaned of all those pullulating bacterial parasites.
1.1Be very crowded and lively: our pullulating megalopolis
More example sentences
  • Although he never married, Hooker's flat on the Brighton sea-front pullulated with friends, widows of friends and innumerable godchildren.
  • This was early Tharp, and pullulated with groundbreaking ideas.
  • Lilywhite wards and the astringent smell of disinfectant had turned into a sad and pullulating slum, the saving grace being the medical orderlies who had refused to surrender.



Pronunciation: /pʌljʊˈleɪʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • A big-book writer launching himself at hard subjects like war and race and sex and ‘pullulation’ and America's remarkable decline.
  • In some areas, this pullulation of alternatives has few costs.


Early 17th century: from Latin pullulat- 'sprouted', from the verb pullulare, from pullulus, diminutive of pullus 'young animal'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pul¦lu|late

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