1

gape

verb \ ˈgāp , sometimes ˈgap \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of gape

gaped; gaping
intransitive verb
1 a :to open the mouth wide
b :to open or part widely
  • holes gaped in the pavement
2 :to gaze stupidly or in openmouthed surprise or wonder
  • gaped at the squabbling monkeys
3 :yawn
  • The dull lecture made the students gape.

gapingly

play \ˈgā-piŋ-lē, ˈga-piŋ-\ adverb

Examples of gape in a Sentence

  1. she suddenly realized she had been gaping at the good-looking waiter instead of giving him her order

Recent Examples of gape from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of gape

Middle English gapen, borrowed from Old Norse gapa, going back to Germanic *gapōn- (whence Middle Dutch gapen "to gaze stupidly," Middle High German gaffen), perhaps of phonesthemic origin

gape Synonyms

Synonyms
blink, gawk, gawp [chiefly British], gaze, goggle, peer, rubberneck, stare
Related Words
glare, gloat, glower; consider, eye, fixate, observe, regard, watch; leer, ogle; peruse, pore (over), study; outface, outstare, stare down
Near Antonyms
glance, glimpse, peek, peep; browse, dip (into), scan; wink (at)

2

gape

noun

Definition of gape

1 :an act of opening the mouth wide:
a :yawn
b :an openmouthed stare
2 :an unfilled space or extent
3 a :the median margin-to-margin length of the open mouth
b :the line along which the mandibles (see mandible 1c) of a bird close
c :the width of an opening
4 gapes plural in form but singular in construction
a :a disease of birds and especially young birds in which gapeworms invade and irritate the trachea (see trachea 1)
b :a fit of yawning

Examples of gape in a Sentence

  1. I told him to stop staring, that his rather stupid gape was annoying.

Recent Examples of gape from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of gape

derivative of 1gape

gape Synonyms

Synonyms
aspect [archaic], eye, gaze, regard, scrutiny, stare
Related Words
glare, glower; contemplation, fixation; attention, observance, observation, surveillance, watch; examination, inspection, perusal, study, survey
Near Antonyms
blink [chiefly Scottish], flash, glance, glimpse, peek, peep, sight, stime [chiefly Scottish & Irish]; oeillade, ogle; browse, scan

GAPE Defined for English Language Learners

gape

verb

Definition of gape for English Language Learners

  • : to open widely

  • : to look at someone or something with your mouth open in surprise or wonder


GAPE Defined for Kids

1

gape

verb \ ˈgāp \

Definition of gape for Students

gaped; gaping
1 :to stare with the mouth open in surprise or wonder
  • … he stood and gaped at her in astonishment …
  • —Astrid Lindgren, Pippi Longstocking
2 :to open or part widely
  • a gaping wound

2

gape

noun

Definition of gape for Students

:an act or instance of opening or staring with the mouth open
  • He ignored everyone's stunned gapes.


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