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2 definitions found
 for incubate
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Incubate \In"cu*bate\, v. i. & t. [imp. & p. p. Incubated; p.
     pr. & vb. n. Incubating.] [L. incubatus, p. p. incubare to
     lie on; pref. in- in, on + cubare to lie down. Cf. Cubit,
     1. To sit, as on eggs for hatching; to brood; to brood upon,
        or keep warm, as eggs, for the purpose of hatching.
        [1913 Webster]
     2. To maintain (a living organism, such as microorganisms or
        a premature baby) under appropriate conditions, such as of
        temperature, humidity, or atmospheric composition, for
        growth; as, coliform bacteria grow best when incubated at
        37[deg] C..
     3. To develop gradually in some interior environment, until
        fully formed; as, the ideas for his book were incubating
        for two years before he began to write.

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      v 1: grow under conditions that promote development
      2: sit on (eggs); "Birds brood"; "The female covers the eggs"
         [syn: brood, hatch, cover, incubate]

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