verb (used with object), cul·ti·vat·ed, cul·ti·vat·ing.
- to prepare and work on (land) in order to raise crops; till.
- to use a cultivator on.
- to promote or improve the growth of (a plant, crop, etc.) by labor and attention.
- to produce by culture: to cultivate a strain of bacteria.
- to develop or improve by education or training; train; refine: to cultivate a singing voice.
- to promote the growth or development of (an art, science, etc.); foster.
- to devote oneself to (an art, science, etc.).
- to seek to promote or foster (friendship, love, etc.).
- to seek the acquaintance or friendship of (a person).
- to till and prepare (land or soil) for the growth of crops
- to plant, tend, harvest, or improve (plants) by labour and skill
- to break up (land or soil) with a cultivator or hoe
- to improve or foster (the mind, body, etc) as by study, education, or labour
- to give special attention toto cultivate a friendship; to cultivate a hobby
- to give or bring culture to (a person, society, etc); civilize
v.early 17c., from Medieval Latin cultivatus, past participle of cultivare, from Late Latin cultivus “tilled,” from Latin cultus (see cult). Figurative sense of “improve by training or education” is from 1680s. Related: Cultivable; cultivated; cultivating.