Definition of disperse
1a : to cause to break up (see break up 1a) police dispersed the crowdb : to cause to become spread widely disperse the troopsc : to cause to evaporate or vanish sunlight dispersing the mist
2 : to spread or distribute from a fixed or constant source: such asa archaic : disseminate disperse the newsb physics : to subject (as light) to dispersionc chemistry : to distribute (as fine particles) more or less evenly throughout a medium
1 : to break up in random fashion the crowd dispersed on request
dispersedlyplay \-ˈspər-səd-lē, -ˈspərst-lē\ adverb
dispersibleplay \-ˈspər-sə-bəl\ adjective
Examples of disperse in a sentence
Police ordered the crowd to disperse.
the crowd dispersed once the show ended
Origin and Etymology of disperse
Middle English, from Latin dispersus, past participle of dispergere to scatter, from dis- + spargere to scatter — more at spark
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of disperse
DISPERSE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of disperse for English Language Learners
: to go or move in different directions : to spread apart
DISPERSE Defined for Kids
Definition of disperse for Students
: to break up and scatter The clouds dispersed.
Medical Definition of disperse
Seen and Heard
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