leach

1
[ leech ]
/ litʃ /

verb (used with object)

to dissolve out soluble constituents from (ashes, soil, etc.) by percolation.
to cause (water or other liquid) to percolate through something.

verb (used without object)

(of ashes, soil, etc.) to undergo the action of percolating water.
to percolate, as water.

noun

Words related to leach

Words nearby leach

Origin of leach

1
1425–75; late Middle English leche leachate, infusion, probably Old English *læc(e), *lec(e), akin to leccan to wet, moisten, causative of leak

OTHER WORDS FROM leach

leach·a·ble, adjectiveleach·a·bil·i·ty, nounleach·er, nounun·leached, adjective

Definition for leach (2 of 3)

leach2
[ leech ]
/ litʃ /

noun Nautical.

Definition for leach (3 of 3)

leech3

or leach

[ leech ]
/ litʃ /

noun Nautical.

either of the lateral edges of a square sail.
the after edge of a fore-and-aft sail.

Origin of leech

3
1480–90; earlier lek, leche, lyche; akin to Dutch lijk leech, Old Norse līk nautical term of uncertain meaning
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for leach

British Dictionary definitions for leach (1 of 5)

leach1
/ (liːtʃ) /

verb

to remove or be removed from a substance by a percolating liquid
to lose or cause to lose soluble substances by the action of a percolating liquid

noun

the act or process of leaching
a substance that is leached or the constituents removed by leaching
a porous vessel for leaching

Derived forms of leach

leacher, noun

Word Origin for leach

C17: variant of obsolete letch to wet, perhaps from Old English leccan to water; related to leak

British Dictionary definitions for leach (2 of 5)

leach2
/ (liːtʃ) /

noun

a variant spelling of leech 2

British Dictionary definitions for leach (3 of 5)

Leach
/ (liːtʃ) /

noun

Bernard (Howell). 1887–1979, British potter, born in Hong Kong

British Dictionary definitions for leach (4 of 5)

leech1
/ (liːtʃ) /

noun

any annelid worm of the class Hirudinea, which have a sucker at each end of the body and feed on the blood or tissues of other animalsSee also horseleech, medicinal leech
a person who clings to or preys on another person
  1. an archaic word for physician
  2. (in combination)leechcraft
cling like a leech to cling or adhere persistently to something

verb

(tr) to use leeches to suck the blood of (a person), as a method of medical treatment

Derived forms of leech

leechlike, adjective

Word Origin for leech

Old English lǣce, lœce; related to Middle Dutch lieke

British Dictionary definitions for leach (5 of 5)

leech2

leach

/ (liːtʃ) /

noun

nautical the after edge of a fore-and-aft sail or either of the vertical edges of a squaresail

Word Origin for leech

C15: of Germanic origin; compare Dutch lijk
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

Medicine definitions for leach

leech
[ lēch ]

n.

Any of various chiefly aquatic bloodsucking or carnivorous annelid worms of the class Hirudinea, one species of which (Hirudo medicinalis) was formerly used by physicians to bleed patients.

v.

To bleed with leeches.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.