verb[with object] (usually be infested)
- Fleas infest the animal (rats, but other rodents as well), and these fleas move freely over to human hosts.
- His McGill ghetto apartment is infested with mice and, try as he might, he can't seem to get rid of them.
- The species was believed to have been wiped out in 1918 when rats infested their home island.
Late Middle English (in the sense 'torment, harass'): from French infester or Latin infestare 'assail', from infestus 'hostile'. The current sense dates from the mid 16th century.
This has the sense ‘torment, harass’ in early examples. It goes back to Latin infestare ‘assail’, from infestus ‘hostile’. The current sense ‘trouble in large numbers’ dates from the mid 16th century.
Words that rhyme with infestabreast, arrest, attest, beau geste, behest, bequest, best, blessed, blest, breast, Brest, Bucharest, Budapest, celeste, chest, contest, crest, digest, divest, guest, hest, ingest, jest, lest, Midwest, molest, nest, northwest, pest, prestressed, protest, quest, rest, self-addressed, self-confessed, self-possessed, southwest, suggest, test, Trieste, unaddressed, unexpressed, unimpressed, unpressed, unstressed, vest, west, wrest, zest
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