the condition of being asleep.
of, pertaining to, or having accommodations for sleeping: a sleeping compartment.
used to sleep in or on: a sleeping jacket.
used to induce or aid sleep or while asleep: sleeping mask.

1250–1300; Middle English; see sleep, -ing1, -ing2

unsleeping, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Word Origin & History

O.E. slæpan "to sleep" (class VII strong verb; past tense slep, pp. slæpen), from W.Gmc. *slæpanan (cf. O.S. slapan, O.Fris. slepa, M.Du. slapen, Du. slapen, O.H.G. slafen, Ger. schlafen, Goth. slepan "to sleep"), from PIE base *sleb- "to be weak, sleep" (cf. O.C.S. slabu, Lith. silpnas
"weak"), which is perhaps connected to the root of slack (adj.). Sleep with "do the sex act with" is in O.E.
"Gif hwa fæmnan beswice unbeweddode, and hire mid slæpe ..." [Laws of King Alfred, c.900]
Sleep around first attested 1928. Sleeping sickness as a specific African tropical disease is first recorded 1875. Sleepless is from early 15c.; sleepy first attested early 13c.

O.E. slæp from the root of sleep (v.) (cf. cognate O.S. slap, O.Fris. slep, M.Du. slæp, Du. slaap, O.H.G. slaf, Ger. Schlaf, Goth. sleps). Personified as L. Somnus, Gk. Hypnos (see somnolence). Fig. use for "repose of death" was
in O.E.; to put (an animal) to sleep "kill painlessly" is recorded from 1942. Sleep-walker "somnambulist" is attested from 1747. To be able to do something in (one's) sleep "easily" is recorded from 1953.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

sleep (slēp)
A natural periodic state of rest for the mind and body, in which the eyes usually close and consciousness is completely or partially lost, so that there is a decrease in bodily movement and responsiveness to external stimuli. During sleep the brain in humans and other mammals undergoes a characteristic cycle of brain-wave activity that includes intervals of dreaming. v. slept (slěpt), sleep·ing, sleeps
To be in the state of sleep.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
sleep  [%PREMIUM_LINK%]     (slēp)  Pronunciation Key 
A natural, reversible state of rest in most vertebrate animals, occurring at regular intervals and necessary for the maintenance of health. During sleep, the eyes usually close, the muscles relax, and responsiveness to external stimuli decreases. Growth and repair of the tissues of the body are thought to occur, and energy is conserved and stored. In humans and certain other animals, sleep occurs in five stages, the first four consisting of non-REM sleep and the last stage consisting of REM sleep. These stages constitute a sleep cycle that repeats itself about five times during a normal episode of sleep. Each cycle is longer that the one preceding it because the length of the REM stage increases with every cycle until waking occurs. Stage I is characterized by drowsiness, Stage II by light sleep, and Stages III and IV by deep sleep. Stages II and III repeat themselves before REM sleep (Stage V), which occurs about 90 minutes after the onset of sleep. During REM sleep, dreams occur, and memory is thought to be organized. In the stages of non-REM sleep, there are no dreams, and brain activity decreases while the body recovers from wakeful activity. The amount and periodicity of sleep in humans vary with age, with infants sleeping frequently for shorter periods, and mature adults sleeping for longer uninterrupted periods. See also non-REM sleep, REM sleep.

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Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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