1680s, "collect or gather in a mass" (trans.), from Latin agglomeratus, past participle of agglomerare "to wind or add onto a ball," from ad "to" (see ad-) + glomerare "wind up in a ball," from glomus (genitive glomeris) "ball of yarn," which is of uncertain origin (see glebe). Intransitive sense "grow into a mass" is from 1730. Related: Agglomerated; agglomerating.
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