[ per-spahyuhr ]
See synonyms for: perspireperspiredperspiringperspiry on

verb (used without object),per·spired, per·spir·ing.
  1. 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.
  1. to emit through pores; exude.

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

Other words from perspire

  • per·spir·a·bil·i·ty, noun
  • per·spir·a·ble, adjective
  • per·spir·ing·ly, adverb
  • per·spir·y, adjective
  • un·per·spired, adjective
  • un·per·spir·ing, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use perspire in a sentence

  • The transference of it from ship to shore and from shore to ship is a matter of awful noise and perspiring confusion.

    Jaffery | William J. Locke
  • It was this latter that particularly angered Harvey, as he paused, perspiring, from his work.

    The Rival Campers Afloat | Ruel Perley Smith

British Dictionary definitions for perspire


/ (pəˈspaɪə) /

  1. to secrete or exude (perspiration) through the pores of the skin

Origin of perspire

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

Derived forms of perspire

  • perspiringly, adverb

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