ab·​sorp·​tion | \ əb-ˈsȯrp-shən How to pronounce absorption (audio) , -ˈzȯrp- \

Definition of absorption

1a : the process of absorbing something or of being absorbed absorption of water — compare adsorption
b : interception of radiant energy or sound waves
2 : entire occupation of the mind his absorption in his work

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Other Words from absorption

absorptive \ əb-​ˈsȯrp-​tiv How to pronounce absorptive (audio) , -​ˈzȯrp-​ \ adjective

Examples of absorption in a Sentence

forgot to return the phone call due to his absorption in setting up the new computer system
Recent Examples on the Web Extended drones, chantlike repeating phrases, tolling chords, spacious reverberation: Those are meditative sounds, defying fracture or interruption, tuning out the momentary and the trivial, invoking concentration, absorption, ritual and rapture. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "Nick Cave Searches for Solace on ‘Ghosteen’," 9 Oct. 2019 Rather than continually push forward, the mood is one of absorption and finding our bearings, letting all the new settle in. Los Angeles Times, "The best concerts for classical music lovers this fall," 11 Sep. 2019 If ingested, the body attacks the small intestine, which is responsible for nutrition absorption. Catie Wegman, sun-sentinel.com, "Fort Lauderdale mom creates baking club for children with dietary restrictions," 26 July 2019 Once fully brewed, strain the mixture and pour the compost tea on your plant roots for immediate absorption. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "How to Make Compost Tea for Your Garden," 29 May 2019 Pair the salsa with healthful fat to up the absorption of antioxidants and fat-soluble vitamins, like vitamin A (two tablespoons provides 20% of the daily goal). Cynthia Sass, Mph, Health.com, "5 Trader Joe's New Products to Try This Fall," 17 Sep. 2019 Research on heat transmission During the Cold War, the absorption of infrared radiation by many different gases was studied extensively. Jason West, The Conversation, "Why carbon dioxide has such outsized influence on Earth’s climate," 13 Sep. 2019 These products can provide a protective coating to lock in moisture on foot pads, can prevent the absorption of harmful chemicals (such as road salt or antifreeze) and help soothe sore skin. Nicole Forsyth, The Mercury News, "Dollars and Pets: Paw, nose and ear protection," 5 Sep. 2019 The marvel of America springs from the absorption of disparate bloodlines of every random family tree into the roots of the vast and diverse national forest. Richard Brady, National Review, "Valley of the Shadow," 31 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'absorption.' 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 absorption

1597, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for absorption

borrowed from French & Late Latin; French, borrowed from Late Latin absorptiōn-, absorptiō, from absorbēre "to absorb" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns

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Time Traveler for absorption

Time Traveler

The first known use of absorption was in 1597

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Statistics for absorption

Last Updated

24 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Absorption.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/absorptive. Accessed 5 December 2019.

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More Definitions for absorption


ab·​sorp·​tion | \ əb-ˈsȯrp-shən How to pronounce absorption (audio) , -ˈzȯrp- \

Kids Definition of absorption

1 : the process of drawing in or soaking up : absorbing or being absorbed the absorption of water by soil
2 : complete attention


ab·​sorp·​tion | \ əb-ˈsȯrp-shən, -ˈzȯrp- How to pronounce absorption (audio) \

Medical Definition of absorption

1 : the process of absorbing or of being absorbed absorption of nourishment in the small intestine — compare adsorption
2 : interception of radiant energy or sound waves



Legal Definition of absorption

: the application to the states of rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution while Powell [v. Alabama] was sometimes described as having absorbed the right to counsel, the Court there clearly limited any such absorption— W. R. LaFave and J. H. Israel

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