absorb

verb
ab·​sorb | \ əb-ˈsȯrb How to pronounce absorb (audio) , -ˈzȯrb How to pronounce absorb (audio) \
absorbed; absorbing; absorbs

Definition of absorb

transitive verb

1a : to take in (something, such as water) in a natural or gradual way a sponge absorbs water charcoal absorbs gas plant roots absorb water
b : to take in (knowledge, attitudes, etc.) : acquire, learn … convictions absorbed in youth …— M. R. Cohen
c : use up, consume The fever absorbed her strength. His work absorbs all his time and attention.
2 : to take in and make part of an existent whole the capacity of a country to absorb new immigrants
3 : to engage or engross wholly an interest that absorbs her completely absorbed in thought
4a(1) : to receive without recoil or echo provided with a sound-absorbing surface
(2) : endure, sustain absorbing hardships
(3) : assume, bear The expenses were absorbed by the company.
b : to transform (radiant energy) into a different form especially with a resulting rise in temperature The earth absorbs the sun's rays.

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Other Words from absorb

absorbability \ əb-​ˌsȯr-​bə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce absorbability (audio) , -​ˌzȯr-​ \ noun
absorbable \ əb-​ˈsȯr-​bə-​bəl How to pronounce absorbable (audio) , -​ˈzȯr-​ How to pronounce absorbable (audio) \ adjective
absorber noun

Examples of absorb in a Sentence

a fabric that absorbs sweat The walls are made of a material that absorbs sound. absorbing heat from the sun She is good at absorbing information. He has retained the values that he absorbed as a young man. a country that has absorbed many immigrants smaller countries invaded and absorbed by bigger ones His interest in photography absorbs him completely. I was so absorbed by her story that I lost track of time.
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Recent Examples on the Web Takata had until the end of 2020 to prove that inflators using ammonium nitrate with a moisture absorbing chemical are safe. CBS News, "Takata recalls 10 million more potentially lethal air bag inflators," 9 Jan. 2020 Takata had until the end of 2020 to prove that inflators using ammonium nitrate with a moisture absorbing chemical are safe. Tom Krisher, USA TODAY, "Takata recalls 10 million more airbags from 14 automakers including Ford, GM, Nissan and Toyota," 9 Jan. 2020 That means the youth movement was in full swing with Sekou Doumbouya and Christian Wood absorbing most of his minutes. Vince Ellis, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Pistons begin life without Blake Griffin, rally past Cleveland Cavaliers, 115-113," 8 Jan. 2020 Takata had until the end of 2020 to prove that inflators using ammonium nitrate with a moisture absorbing chemical are safe. Washington Post, "Takata recall of 10M inflators could be last of air bag saga," 8 Jan. 2020 Coconut flour absorbs considerably more moisture than most alternative flours, and the results can be crumbly if the recipe is off balance. Paul Stephen, ExpressNews.com, "Doing paleo, keto or Whole30? 5 wheat-alternative flours and how to use them," 8 Jan. 2020 Takata had until the end of 2020 to prove that inflators using ammonium nitrate with a moisture absorbing chemical are safe. Tom Krisher, BostonGlobe.com, "Takata recall of 10m inflators could be last of air bag saga," 8 Jan. 2020 Let the mixture rest for about 15 minutes so the bread fully absorbs all the wet ingredients. Erin Booke, Dallas News, "Pasta Granny goals: 3 frugal recipes from our new favorite cookbook," 7 Jan. 2020 But no one had yet rigorously tested whether the iron was in the form that diatoms can absorb, Kaplan says. Emily Underwood, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Complicated Role of Iron in Ocean Health and Climate Change," 6 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'absorb.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of absorb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for absorb

borrowed from Middle French assorber, absorber, asorbir, absorbir, going back to Old French, borrowed (with conjugation changes) from Latin absorbēre, from ab- ab- + sorbēre "to suck up, draw in, engulf," going back to Indo-European *sṛbh-eii̯̯e-, probably re-formed from *srobh-eii̯̯e-, iterative derivative from the verb base *srebh- "suck up, drink noisily"; akin to Greek rophéō, ropheîn "to drink in gulps," Armenian arbi "drank," Lithuanian srebiù, srė̃bti "to gulp," Old Russian sereblyu, serebati

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Time Traveler for absorb

Time Traveler

The first known use of absorb was in the 15th century

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Statistics for absorb

Last Updated

12 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Absorb.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/absorb. Accessed 20 January 2020.

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More Definitions for absorb

absorb

verb
ab·​sorb | \ əb-ˈsȯrb How to pronounce absorb (audio) , -ˈzȯrb \
absorbed; absorbing

Kids Definition of absorb

1 : to take in or swallow up A sponge absorbs water.
2 : to hold the complete attention of She was absorbed by the movie.
3 : to receive without giving back The walls of the theater absorb sound.
ab·​sorb | \ əb-ˈsȯ(ə)rb How to pronounce absorb (audio) , -ˈzȯ(ə)rb How to pronounce absorb (audio) \

Medical Definition of absorb

1 : to take up especially by capillary, osmotic, solvent, or chemical action surgical sutures which can be absorbed by the body the blood in the lungs absorbs oxygen
2 : to transform (radiant energy) into a different form usually with a resulting rise in temperature chlorophyll reflects green light and absorbs the other colors of light

Other Words from absorb

absorbable \ əb-​ˈsȯr-​bə-​bəl How to pronounce absorbable (audio) , -​ˈzȯr-​ How to pronounce absorbable (audio) \ adjective
absorber noun
ab·​sorb

Legal Definition of absorb

1 : to make (a right guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution) applicable to the states
2a : to bear or assume the burden of expenses were absorbed by the company
b : to lessen the tax liability for has other losses to absorb the income— D. Q. Posin

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More from Merriam-Webster on absorb

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for absorb

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with absorb

Spanish Central: Translation of absorb

Nglish: Translation of absorb for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of absorb for Arabic Speakers

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