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[seep] /sip/
verb (used without object)
to pass, flow, or ooze gradually through a porous substance:
Water seeps through cracks in the wall.
(of ideas, methods, etc.) to enter or be introduced at a slow pace:
The new ideas finally seeped down to the lower echelons.
to become diffused; permeate:
Fog seeped through the trees, obliterating everything.
verb (used with object)
to cause to seep; filter:
The vodka is seeped through charcoal to purify it.
moisture that seeps out; seepage.
a small spring, pool, or other place where liquid from the ground has oozed to the surface of the earth.
Origin of seep
1780-90; perhaps variant of dial. sipe, itself perhaps continuing Old English sīpian (cognate with Middle Low German sīpen) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for seeped
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • That fact had seeped through all his abstraction very early in his ministry in Glen St. Mary.

    Rainbow Valley Lucy Maud Montgomery
  • A dark patch on his back showed where the perspiration had seeped through.

    Faithfully Yours Lou Tabakow
  • She hated the conflicting odors that seeped into the atmosphere at certain hours of the day.

    The Quirt B.M. Bower
  • Now the same summons had seeped around to him from another direction.

    Birthright T.S. Stribling
  • Incredibly huge portals barred egress to an outer world, from which seeped strange sharp odors.

  • And the water must have seeped through into this room at times, for some of the planks in the floor nearest the wall were rotting.

    Mary Ware's Promised Land Annie Fellows Johnston
British Dictionary definitions for seeped


(intransitive) to pass gradually or leak through or as if through small openings; ooze
a small spring or place where water, oil, etc, has oozed through the ground
another word for seepage
Word Origin
Old English sīpian; related to Middle High German sīfen, Swedish dialect sipa
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 seeped



1790, variant of sipe (c.1500), possibly from Old English sipian "to seep," from Proto-Germanic *sip- (cf. Middle High German sifen, Dutch sijpelen "to ooze"), from PIE root *seib- "to pour out, drip, trickle" (see soap (n.)). Related: Seeped; seeping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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