escape

verb
es·​cape | \ i-ˈskāp, e-, dialectal ik-ˈskāp\
escaped; escaping

Definition of escape 

(Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1a : to get away (as by flight) escaped from prison
b : to issue from confinement gas is escaping
c of a plant : to run wild from cultivation
2 : to avoid a threatening evil the boat sank but the crew escaped

transitive verb

1 : to get free of : break away from escape the jungle escape the solar system
2 : to get or stay out of the way of : avoid efforts to escape poverty
3 : to fail to be noticed or recallable by his name escapes me
4a : to issue from a smile escaped me
b : to be uttered involuntarily by a sigh of relief escaped her

escape

noun

Definition of escape (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : an act or instance of escaping: such as
a : flight from confinement
b : evasion of something undesirable
c : leakage or outflow especially of a fluid
d : distraction or relief from routine or reality
2 : a means of escape
3 : a cultivated plant run wild
4 or less commonly Escape : escape key

escape

adjective

Definition of escape (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : providing a means of escape escape literature
2 : providing a means of evading a regulation, claim, or commitment an escape clause in a contract

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Other Words from escape

Verb

escaper noun

Synonyms for escape

Synonyms: Verb

abscond, break out (of), clear out, flee, fly, get out, lam, run away, run off

Synonyms: Noun

break, breakout, bunk [British], flight, getaway, lam, rout, slip

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Choose the Right Synonym for escape

Verb

escape, avoid, evade, elude, shun, eschew mean to get away or keep away from something. escape stresses the fact of getting away or being passed by not necessarily through effort or by conscious intent. nothing escapes her sharp eyes avoid stresses forethought and caution in keeping clear of danger or difficulty. try to avoid past errors evade implies adroitness, ingenuity, or lack of scruple in escaping or avoiding. evaded the question by changing the subject elude implies a slippery or baffling quality in the person or thing that escapes. what she sees in him eludes me shun often implies an avoiding as a matter of habitual practice or policy and may imply repugnance or abhorrence. you have shunned your responsibilities eschew implies an avoiding or abstaining from as unwise or distasteful. a playwright who eschews melodrama

Did You Know?

If you were being held captive by someone gripping the coat or cloak you were wearing, you might be able to get away by slipping out of it. This is the idea on which the word escape is based. Escape is made up of the Latin prefix ex-, which means “out of,” and the Latin word cappa, which means “head covering” or “cloak.”

Examples of escape in a Sentence

Verb

They managed to escape from the burning building. He needed a vacation to escape the routine of daily life. She moved to the city to escape the memory of her mother's death. trying to help people to escape poverty trying to help people to escape from poverty He succeeded in escaping punishment for many years. A few passengers somehow escaped injury. She barely escaped death when her car slid off the road. Several passengers escaped without injury.

Noun

The prisoners attempted a daring escape. He celebrated his escape from his boring job with a long vacation. She had a lucky escape when she wasn't injured in the accident. She managed to avoid serious injury, but it was a narrow escape. The door was locked; there was no escape. Gardening offered an escape from her busy life. an accidental escape of poisonous gases trying to prevent further escape of liquid
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The wasps hatch, devour the roach inside the egg case and escape by drilling a hole out to freedom. Rob Dunn, Discover Magazine, "Our Attempts to Eradicate Insects are Just Making them Resistant to Pesticides," 16 Nov. 2018 And because even royal siblings can't escape wearing matching outfits, the sisters finished off their looks with the same sparkly sandals. Temi Adebowale, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Spanish Royal Family's Vacation Portraits Are Here and They're Definitely Much Nicer Than Ours," 30 July 2018 To escape, the children must dive through dark, narrow passageways sometimes no more than two-feet (0.6- meter) wide, that have challenged some of the world's leading cave divers. Tassanee Vejpongsa And Kaweewit Kaewjinda, Houston Chronicle, "4 rescued from Thai cave in risky operation; 9 remain inside," 9 July 2018 Glen Anderson, 79, came to the Ramona Senior Center to escape the heat at home and use a senior center computer. Julie Gallant, Ramona Sentinel, "Doors open to people who want to beat the heat," 7 July 2018 Clouds act like a blanket, and the heat that accumulates during the day cannot escape, O'Malley said. Kelsey Mo, azcentral, "At 94 degrees, Phoenix breaks highest low on record for July 6," 6 July 2018 Even the idyllic climate of San Diego could not escape the trend of soaring temperatures in the southern part of the state. Michael Mcgough And Cassie Dickman, sacbee, "Planning a weekend road trip? Heat and fires throughout California might make it tough," 6 July 2018 Book your family a Caribbean cruise with Princess Cruises and create an unforgettable family escape this year. Princess Cruises, Bon Appetit, "Set Sail for Adventure This Holiday Season," 2 July 2018 The second circumstance is to prevent a suspect from escaping, but only if the officer has probable cause to think the suspect poses a dangerous threat to others. German Lopez, Vox, "After a mall shooting, police killed the wrong person — and the real shooter remains at large," 26 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Many escapes have been harrowing, such as the 2012 flight of Yasiel Puig, who signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Baseball Teams Up With Castro," 30 Dec. 2018 Castle Hill Inn, Newport, Rhode Island The first Rhode Island hotel to be invited to join the prestigious Relais & Chateaux hotel group, in 2008, Castle Hill Inn is a luxurious seaside escape steeped in rich New England history. Ariel Okin, Vogue, "8 Romantic Winter Weekend Getaways From New York City," 29 Dec. 2018 Eventually, the escape pod gives way to an undersea farm, which gives way to a fully autonomous base. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Ars Technica’s best games of 2018," 24 Dec. 2018 Deborah and Edmond set up what might now be viewed as the world’s first destination health escape, Rancho La Puerta, in Baja California. Daisy Finer, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Golden Door Is the World's Most Iconic Spa," 21 Dec. 2018 Over at the Pembrooke, Hiram returns from his morning run and tries to goad Veronica into a fight by filling her in on Archie’s attempted escape. Jessica Macleish, Teen Vogue, ""Riverdale" Recap Season 3 Episode 5: Can Archie Escape From a Teenage Fight Club?!," 15 Nov. 2018 Turn your dorm room into a seasonal escape with some adorable decorations! Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "15 Care Package Items for Every Kind of College Student," 2 Aug. 2018 Born Anna Mae Bullock in Nutbush, Tennessee, Turner first sought escape and solace from an unhappy childhood through singing in church. Hamish Bowles, Vogue, "What’s on at the Theater? A Comprehensive Guide to London’s Best Shows This Fall," 18 Oct. 2018 Trending Video The Racist & Misogynistic History of Prom To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that : 0%: 0% RM said that his one escape and form of expression was music. Emily Wang, Teen Vogue, "RM from BTS Gave a Powerful Speech About Self-Love to the United Nations," 24 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Another epic escape act seems improbable, but can't be ruled out if Di Francesco gets his tactics right in Rome. Stevens Griffiths, chicagotribune.com, "Three things we learned from Liverpool v Roma," 24 Apr. 2018 During his final three matches at the sectional, Skokna consistently employed a strategy of letting his opponent get escape points without trying to keep him down. Patrick Kelly, chicagotribune.com, "Extra work helps pair of Hinsdale Central wrestlers reach state," 16 Feb. 2018 The Saturn 5, which flew 13 times, had an Earth-escape payload capacity of more than 100,000 pounds, about three times the capability of the Falcon Heavy. William Harwood, CBS News, "SpaceX prepares for dramatic Falcon Heavy launch," 4 Feb. 2018 There are already escape room businesses in Aurora, Naperville, McHenry, St. Charles, Schaumburg, Wheaton, quite a few other suburbs and in Chicago. Mike Danahey, Elgin Courier-News, "Escape room opens in downtown Elgin," 25 July 2017

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

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1817, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for escape

Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French escaper, eschaper, from Vulgar Latin *excappare, from Latin ex- + Late Latin cappa head covering, cloak

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Statistics for escape

Last Updated

19 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for escape

The first known use of escape was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for escape

escape

verb

English Language Learners Definition of escape

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to get away from a place (such as a prison) where you are being held or kept

: to get away from a dangerous place or situation

: to get away from something that is difficult or unpleasant

escape

noun

English Language Learners Definition of escape (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of escaping from a place, situation, etc.

: a way of escaping from a place, situation, etc.

: an occurrence in which an amount of liquid or gas passes out through a hole or crack in a container

escape

verb
es·​cape | \ i-ˈskāp \
escaped; escaping

Kids Definition of escape

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to get away : get free or clear Everyone escaped from the burning building.
2 : to keep free of : avoid She managed to escape injury.
3 : to fail to be noticed or remembered by The name escapes me.
4 : to leak out Gas is escaping from the tank.

escape

noun

Kids Definition of escape (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of getting away a narrow escape
2 : a way of getting away … there was no escape except up the cliff.— Jack London, The Call of the Wild

escape

verb
es·​cape | \ is-ˈkāp \
escaped; escaping

Medical Definition of escape 

(Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to avoid or find relief from something by means of an escape

transitive verb

: to avoid or find relief from (something) by means of an escape he was unable to escape reality

escape

noun

Medical Definition of escape (Entry 2 of 3)

: an act or instance of escaping: as
a : evasion of something undesirable find no method of escape from pain and suffering
b : distraction or relief from routine or reality especially : mental distraction or relief by flight into idealizing fantasy or fiction that serves to glorify the self

escape

adjective

Medical Definition of escape (Entry 3 of 3)

: providing a means of escape escape literature

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es·​cape
escaped; escaping

Legal Definition of escape 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: to depart from lawful custody with the intent of avoiding confinement or the administration of justice

escape

noun

Legal Definition of escape (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of escaping
2 : the criminal offense of escaping

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More from Merriam-Webster on escape

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with escape

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for escape

Spanish Central: Translation of escape

Nglish: Translation of escape for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of escape for Arabic Speakers

Comments on escape

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