AskDefine | Define foment

Dictionary Definition



1 try to stir up public opinion [syn: agitate, stir up]
2 bathe with warm water or medicated lotions; "His legs should be fomented"

User Contributed Dictionary



From fomenter, from fomentare, from fomentum, from fovere.


  • a RP /fəʊ'mɛnt/
  • a US /foʊ'mɛnt/|/fə'mɛnt/



  1. To apply a poultice to; to bathe with a cloth or sponge.
    • 1904, Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Abbey Grange, Norton (2005), page 1178,
      The maid had entered with us, and began once more to foment the bruise upon her mistress's brow.
  2. To incite or cause; To promote, to encourage; to instigate.
    He was arrested for fomenting a riot; after all, it's bad enough being in a riot but starting one is much worse.

Derived terms


to apply a poultice to
  • Russian: класть примочки или припарки (klast primóchki íli pripárki)
  • Spanish: fomentar
to incite or cause
  • Japanese: 醸成する (jōsei suru); 胎動 (taidō)
  • Portuguese: fomentar
  • Spanish: fomentar
  • Russian: провоцировать, побуждать; подстрекать, разжигать (чувство, беспорядок)

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abate, abet, advance, agitate, agitation, allay, alleviate, anesthetize, annoy, appease, arouse, assuage, awake, awaken, benumb, blow the coals, blow up, bluster, bobbery, boil, boiling, brouhaha, bustle, call forth, call up, chafe, churn, commotion, conturbation, cook, cultivate, cushion, deaden, deaden the pain, diminish, discomposure, disorder, disquiet, disquietude, disturbance, dull, ease, ease matters, ebullition, egg on, electric-heat, embroilment, encourage, enkindle, enrage, excite, excitement, fan, fan the fire, fan the flame, feed the fire, ferment, fermentation, fever, feverishness, fidgets, fire, fire up, flame, flap, flurry, fluster, flutteration, forward, foster, frenzy, fume, further, fuss, galvanize, gas-heat, give relief, goad, heat, heat up, hot, hot up, hot-air-heat, hot-water-heat, hubbub, hurly-burly, impassion, incense, incite, inflame, infuriate, initiate, inquietude, inspire, instigate, jitters, jumpiness, key up, kindle, lather up, lay, lessen, light the fuse, light up, lull, madden, maelstrom, malaise, mitigate, moil, mollify, motivate, move, mull, nerviness, nervosity, nervousness, nettle, numb, nurse, nurture, overexcite, overheat, pad, palliate, perturbation, pique, poultice, pour balm into, pour oil on, preheat, promote, prompt, provoke, put up to, raise, rally, recook, reduce, reheat, relieve, restlessness, roil, rouse, rout, row, salve, seethe, seething, set, set astir, set fire to, set on, set on fire, sic on, slacken, slake, soften, soothe, spur, start, steam, steam up, stimulate, stir, stir the blood, stir the embers, stir the feelings, stir up, stoke up, stupe, subdue, summon up, superheat, swirl, tepefy, tickle, to-do, trepidation, trepidity, tumult, tumultuation, turbidity, turbulence, turmoil, turn on, twitter, unease, unrest, upset, urge, wake, wake up, waken, warm, warm over, warm the blood, warm up, whet, whip up, work into, work up
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