propagation

If your dog is about to have puppies, then she's engaged in the propagation of dogs, the creation of new life to further the species.

Propagation has two main uses, both having to do with multiplying something. If it's used in relation to creatures, that means that the creatures are multiplying — having kids. A synonym for this is procreation. You can also use propagation for anything that multiplies and spreads through larger and larger numbers or spaces — from the propagation of weeds in your garden to the propagation of a new idea. In physics, propagation is wave movement.

Primary Meanings of propagation

1.
n
the act of producing offspring or multiplying by such production
2.
n
the spreading of something (a belief or practice) into new regions
3.
n
the movement of a wave through a medium
Full Definitions of propagation
1

n the act of producing offspring or multiplying by such production

Synonyms:
generation, multiplication
Types:
biogenesis, biogeny
the production of living organisms from other living organisms
Type of:
breeding, facts of life, procreation, reproduction
the sexual activity of conceiving and bearing offspring
2

n the spreading of something (a belief or practice) into new regions

Synonyms:
extension
Type of:
airing, dissemination, public exposure, spreading
the opening of a subject to widespread discussion and debate
3

n the movement of a wave through a medium

Types:
Doppler effect, Doppler shift
change in the apparent frequency of a wave as observer and source move toward or away from each other
red shift, redshift
(astronomy) a shift in the spectra of very distant galaxies toward longer wavelengths (toward the red end of the spectrum); generally interpreted as evidence that the universe is expanding
wave front
all the points just reached by a wave as it propagates
Type of:
physical phenomenon
a natural phenomenon involving the physical properties of matter and energy

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.