[per-spahyuh r]

verb (used without object), per·spired, per·spir·ing.

to secrete a salty, watery fluid from the sweat glands of the skin, especially when very warm as a result of strenuous exertion; sweat.

verb (used with object), per·spired, per·spir·ing.

to emit through pores; exude.


Nearby words

  1. perspicuity,
  2. perspicuous,
  3. perspicuously,
  4. perspiration,
  5. perspiratory,
  6. persson,
  7. persson, göran,
  8. persuadable,
  9. persuade,
  10. persuader

Origin of perspire

1640–50; < Latin perspīrāre to blow constantly (said of the wind), breathe through; in New Latin: to sweat imperceptibly. See per-, inspire

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for perspire

British Dictionary definitions for perspire



to secrete or exude (perspiration) through the pores of the skin
Derived Formsperspiringly, adverb

Word Origin for perspire

C17: from Latin perspīrāre to blow, from per- (through) + spīrāre to breathe; compare inspire

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 perspire


Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for perspire




To excrete perspiration through the pores of the skin.

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