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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. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for seeped
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A dark patch on his back showed where the perspiration had seeped through.

    Faithfully Yours Lou Tabakow
  • Stained it was with fresh blood which had seeped onto it from him.

    Each Man Kills Victoria Glad
  • This was something that had seeped up from old feeling; it had no life of its own.

    Fidelity Susan Glaspell
  • But no jungle odors had seeped through that other Tube on its completion.

    The Fifth-Dimension Tube William Fitzgerald Jenkins
  • The water that seeped into the puddle on the floor moistened their lips as they talked.

    In the Heart of a Fool William Allen White
  • Sleep held him until daylight seeped in through the one dingy window.

    The Uphill Climb

    B. M. Bower
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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