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intersperse

[in-ter-spurs]
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verb (used with object), in·ter·spersed, in·ter·spers·ing.
  1. to scatter here and there or place at intervals among other things: to intersperse flowers among shrubs.
  2. to diversify with something placed or scattered at intervals: to intersperse a dull speech with interesting anecdotes.
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Origin of intersperse

1560–70; < Latin interspersus (past participle of interspergere to strew here and there), equivalent to inter- inter- + -spersus, combining form of sparsus, past participle of spargere to scatter; see disperse
Related formsin·ter·spers·ed·ly [in-ter-spur-sid-lee] /ˌɪn tərˈspɜr sɪd li/, adverbin·ter·sper·sion [in-ter-spur-zhuhn or, esp. British, -shuhn] /ˌɪn tərˈspɜr ʒən or, esp. British, -ʃən/, in·ter·sper·sal, nounun·in·ter·spersed, adjective

Synonyms for intersperse

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for interspersed

infuse, sprinkle, pepper, intermix, distribute, interlard, diffuse, bestrew, interfuse

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British Dictionary definitions for interspersed

intersperse

verb (tr)
  1. to scatter or distribute among, between, or on
  2. to diversify (something) with other things scattered here and there
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Derived Formsinterspersedly (ˌɪntəˈspɜːsɪdlɪ), adverbinterspersion (ˌɪntəˈspɜːʃən) or interspersal, noun

Word Origin for intersperse

C16: from Latin interspargere, from inter- + spargere to sprinkle
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 interspersed

intersperse

v.

1560s, from Latin interspersus "strewn, scattered, sprinkled upon," past participle of *interspergere, from inter- "between" (see inter-) + spargere "to scatter" (see sparse). Related: Interspersed; interspersing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper