Etymology
Advertisement

incubate (v.)

1640s (transitive), "to brood upon, watch jealously" (figurative); 1721 in literal sense "to sit on (eggs) to hatch them," from Latin incubatus, past participle of incubare "to lie in or upon," also in the figurative sense "brood" (see incubation). Intransitive sense "to sit upon eggs" is from 1755. Related: Incubated; incubating.

updated on November 09, 2015

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of incubate from WordNet

incubate (v.)
grow under conditions that promote development;
incubate (v.)
sit on (eggs);
Synonyms: brood / hatch / cover
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.