Origin of escape

1250–1300; Middle English escapen, ascapen < Old North French escaper (French échapper) < Vulgar Latin *excappāre, verbal derivative (with ex- ex-1) of Late Latin cappa hooded cloak (see cap1)
Related formses·cap·a·ble, adjectivees·cape·less, adjectivees·cap·er, nounes·cap·ing·ly, adverbpre·es·cape, noun, verb (used without object), pre·es·caped, pre·es·cap·ing.self-es·cape, nounun·es·cap·a·ble, adjectiveun·es·cap·a·bly, adverbun·es·caped, adjective

Synonym study

7. Escape, elude, evade mean to keep free of something. To escape is to succeed in keeping away from danger, pursuit, observation, etc.: to escape punishment. To elude implies baffling pursuers or slipping through an apparently tight net: The fox eluded the hounds. To evade is to turn aside from or go out of reach of a person or thing: to evade the police. See also avoid.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for escaped

free, liberated

Examples from the Web for escaped

Contemporary Examples of escaped

Historical Examples of escaped

  • How I closed the argument—the conversation and the interview—and escaped from her, I know not.

  • The inside of the church was then burnt, and hardly one escaped.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • A society that had escaped from fear would escape from their control.

  • This father would not even look at the son that had but just escaped the jaws of death!

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • The Causses, owing to their isolated position, may be said to have escaped a history.

    The Roof of France

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

British Dictionary definitions for escaped



to get away or break free from (confinements, captors, etc)the lion escaped from the zoo
to manage to avoid (imminent danger, punishment, evil, etc)to escape death
(intr usually foll by from) (of gases, liquids, etc) to issue gradually, as from a crack or fissure; seep; leakwater was escaping from the dam
(tr) to elude; be forgotten bythe actual figure escapes me
(tr) to be articulated inadvertently or involuntarilya roar escaped his lips
(intr) (of cultivated plants) to grow wild


the act of escaping or state of having escaped
avoidance of injury, harm, etca narrow escape
  1. a means or way of escape
  2. (as modifier)an escape route
a means of distraction or relief, esp from reality or boredomangling provides an escape for many city dwellers
a gradual outflow; leakage; seepage
Also called: escape valve, escape cock a valve that releases air, steam, etc, above a certain pressure; relief valve or safety valve
a plant that was originally cultivated but is now growing wild
Derived Formsescapable, adjectiveescaper, noun

Word Origin for escape

C14: from Old Northern French escaper, from Vulgar Latin excappāre (unattested) to escape (literally: to remove one's cloak, hence free oneself), from ex- 1 + Late Latin cappa cloak
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

Word Origin and History for escaped



c.1300, from Old North French escaper, Old French eschaper (12c., Modern French échapper), from Vulgar Latin *excappare, literally "get out of one's cape, leave a pursuer with just one's cape," from Latin ex- "out of" (see ex-) + Late Latin cappa "mantle" (see cap (n.)). Related: Escaped; escaping.



c.1400, from escape (v.); earlier eschap (c.1300). Mental/emotional sense is from 1853. Escape clause in the legal sense first recorded 1945.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

escaped in Medicine




A gradual effusion from an enclosure; a leakage.
A cardiological situation in which one pacemaker defaults or an atrioventricular conduction fails, and another pacemaker sets the heart's pace for one or more beats.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with escaped


In addition to the idiom beginning with escape

  • escape notice

also see:

  • narrow escape
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.