- a simple past tense and past participle of leap.
- to spring through the air from one point or position to another; jump: to leap over a ditch.
- to move or act quickly or suddenly: to leap aside; She leaped at the opportunity.
- to pass, come, rise, etc., as if with a jump: to leap to a conclusion; an idea that immediately leaped to mind.
- to jump over: to leap a fence.
- to pass over as if by a jump.
- to cause to leap: to leap a horse.
- a spring, jump, or bound; a light, springing movement.
- the distance covered in a leap; distance jumped.
- a place leaped or to be leaped over or from.
- a sudden or abrupt transition: a successful leap from piano class to concert hall.
- a sudden and decisive increase: a leap in the company's profits.
- by leaps and bounds, very rapidly: We are progressing by leaps and bounds.
- leap in the dark, an action of which the consequences are unknown: The experiment was a leap in the dark.
- leap of faith, an act or instance of accepting or trusting in something that cannot readily be seen or proved.
Origin of leap
SynonymsSee more synonyms for leap on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for leapt
According to the sheriff, 18-year-old Levi Weaver begged the officer to shoot him, and then leapt at him.The 14 Teens Killed by Cops Since Michael Brown
November 25, 2014
Housing starts, which had been sandbagged by poor weather, leapt sharply.The U.S. Economy Had a Hiccup, Not a Heart Attack, This Year
May 29, 2014
You had never heard of me until I leapt up here and introduced myself.Class of 2014, Prepare to Be Powerless
May 24, 2014
Conservatives, notably Rush Limbaugh, leapt on CBS today to complain that late night would now be an overtly left-wing roustabout.Which Stephen Colbert Will We See on CBS?
April 10, 2014
They conceivably could have leapt from a number of tall buildings and then drifted over to where they landed.Hero or Criminal? James Brady, the WTC Ironworker Who Jumped Off the Building
March 25, 2014
The poor dog heard the tumult, and leapt to your aid, sir, and we made after him.The Armourer's Prentices
Charlotte M. Yonge
He leapt for joy at her words, and snatching at his sword, which had been left to him, buckled it on.Fair Margaret
H. Rider Haggard
She had leapt as the deer leaps, and crouched, still as any deer.The Incomplete Amorist
Me she had not seen, nor did she till I darted out of my ambush, and leapt after Rupert into the moat.
And all she cried was, that I had been at the end of the bridge and leapt off.
- a past tense and past participle of leap
- (intr) to jump suddenly from one place to another
- (intr often foll by at) to move or react quickly
- (tr) to jump over
- to come into prominence rapidlythe thought leapt into his mind
- (tr) to cause (an animal, esp a horse) to jump a barrier
- the act of jumping
- a spot from which a leap was or may be made
- the distance of a leap
- an abrupt change or increase
- Also called (US and Canadian): skip music a relatively large melodic interval, esp in a solo part
- a leap in the dark an action performed without knowledge of the consequences
- by leaps and bounds with unexpectedly rapid progress
Word Origin and History for leapt
c.1200, from Old English hliep, hlyp (West Saxon), *hlep (Mercian, Northumbrian) "a leap, bound, spring, sudden movement; thing to leap from;" common Germanic (cf. Old Frisian hlep, Dutch loop, Old High German hlouf, German lauf); from the root of leap (v.). Leaps has been paired with bounds since at least 1720.
c.1200, from Old English hleapan "to jump, run, leap" (class VII strong verb; past tense hleop, past participle hleapen), from Proto-Germanic *khlaupan (cf. Old Saxon hlopan, Old Norse hlaupa, Old Frisian hlapa, Dutch lopen, Old High German hlouffan, German laufen "to run," Gothic us-hlaupan "to jump up"), of uncertain origin, with no known cognates beyond Germanic. Leap-frog, the children's game, is attested by that name from 1590s; figurative use by 1704.
First loke and aftirward lepe [proverb recorded from mid-15c.]
Related: Leaped; leaping.
Idioms and Phrases with leapt
In addition to the idioms beginning with leap
- leap in the dark
- leap of faith
- by leaps and bounds
- look before you leap
- quantum leap
Also see underjump.