9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[si-kreet] /sɪˈkrit/
verb (used with object), secreted, secreting.
to discharge, generate, or release by the process of secretion.
Origin of secrete1
1700-10; back formation from secretion


[si-kreet] /sɪˈkrit/
verb (used with object), secreted, secreting.
to place out of sight; hide; conceal:
squirrels secreting nuts in a hollow tree trunk.
1735-45; alteration of obsolete secret, v. use of secret
cover, shroud, disguise. See hide1 .


[suh-kret] /səˈkrɛt/
noun, Armor.
a steel skullcap of the 17th century, worn under a soft hat.
< French; see secret Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for secrete
  • When cracks form, the bacteria wake from dormancy and secrete limestone, in effect healing the concrete.
  • Scientists have discovered that certain caterpillars manufacture and secrete their own insect repellent, a new study shows.
  • Zebra tarantulas secrete silk through their feet to increase traction, scientists say.
  • On each tomato seed, tiny hairs called trichomes secrete the goo that encases them.
  • In response to high levels of glucose in the blood, the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas secrete the hormone insulin.
  • Oriental fire-bellied toads secrete toxins from their skin, and they want potential predators to know it.
  • Many animals secrete more melatonin when the long nights of winter arrive.
  • Mice secrete these chemicals in urine and mark their territory, much as dogs do.
  • There is a secrete in human body that modern medicine cannot find.
  • There they secrete an array of chemicals intended to limit any infection.
British Dictionary definitions for secrete


(of a cell, organ, etc) to synthesize and release (a secretion)
Derived Forms
secretor, noun
Word Origin
C18: back formation from secretion


(transitive) to put in a hiding place
Word Origin
C18: variant of obsolete secret to hide away; see secret (n)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for secrete

1707, back-formation from secretion. Related: Secreted; secretes; secreting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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secrete in Medicine

secrete se·crete (sĭ-krēt')
v. se·cret·ed, se·cret·ing, se·cretes
To generate and separate a substance from cells or bodily fluids.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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secrete in Science
To produce and discharge a substance, especially from the cells of specialized glands. For example, the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas secrete the hormone insulin.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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