\ ˈgəlp How to pronounce gulp (audio) \
gulped; gulping; gulps

Definition of gulp

transitive verb

1 : to swallow hurriedly or greedily or in one swallow
2 : to keep back as if by swallowing gulp down a sob
3 : to take in readily as if by swallowing gulp down knowledge

intransitive verb

: to catch the breath as if in taking a long drink

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Other Words from gulp

gulp noun
gulper noun

Examples of gulp in a Sentence

She told him not to gulp his food. The exhausted racers lay on the ground, gulping air. The exhausted racers were gulping for air. I gulped nervously before beginning my speech. “That's a lot of money,” she gulped. He gulped back tears as he thanked the rescuers.
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Recent Examples on the Web

To avoid putting your dog's health in danger, try your best to prevent your dog from consuming salt of any kind, including gulping on saltwater while playing in the ocean. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "6-Year-Old Dog Dies From Saltwater Poisoning After a Playful Day at the Beach," 20 July 2018 The America's Got Talent live shows have begun, which means the fate of the performers is now officially in the country's hands (gulp). Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'America's Got Talent' Winner Darci Lynne Farmer Almost Didn't Become a Ventriloquist," 15 Aug. 2018 In that case, gulping a bunch of cold air (or running into some other asthma trigger) can make your airways inflamed and narrow, über-mucous-y, and also make the muscles around them constrict, the NHLBI explains. Korin Miller, SELF, "Here’s Why It Hurts So Much to Breathe Cold Air," 19 Oct. 2018 Since the advent of Philadelphia’s tax on sweetened beverages, Philadelphians are 64 percent less likely to gulp down a sports drink, researchers at the Dornsife School of Public Health at Drexel University concluded. Mari A. Schaefer,, "Are teens consuming too many sports drinks?," 7 May 2018 Inside, Connor ate French toast sticks and gulped milk at the kitchen table., "Raising Connor," 4 May 2018 The all-electric race car not only set a new record for EVs, but set the fastest time ever, by any car, even ones with high-performance, gas-gulping, engines. Jack Stewart, WIRED, "The Neat Engineering VW Used to Smash the Pikes Peak Record," 25 June 2018 These flies are easy prey for fish, who rise to the surface of the river and open their gulping fish mouths to suck in the bugs. Heather Radke, Longreads, "A Beginner’s Guide to Fly Fishing With Your Father," 16 June 2018 Here are some top spots to enjoy Independence Day, plus a list of community celebrations for everyone, whether your thing is watching fireworks, gulping oysters or growing a marvelous mustache. Morning Brief, The Seattle Times, "We go inside Amazon’s warehouse world, plus Kam Chancellor retires from the NFL | Monday Morning Brief, July 2," 2 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for gulp

Middle English, from a Middle Dutch or Middle Low German word akin to Dutch & Frisian gulpen to bubble forth, drink deep; akin to Old English gielpan to boast — more at yelp

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Time Traveler for gulp

The first known use of gulp was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for gulp



English Language Learners Definition of gulp

: to eat or swallow (something) quickly or in large amounts
: to take (air) into your lungs quickly
: to swallow because of strong emotion (such as fear or shock)


\ ˈgəlp How to pronounce gulp (audio) \
gulped; gulping

Kids Definition of gulp

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to swallow in a hurry or in large amounts at a time
2 : to breathe in deeply Roy turned his head away to gulp some fresh air.— Carl Hiaasen, Hoot
3 : to keep back as if by swallowing He gulped down a sob.
4 : to say in a nervous way “Oops,” she gulped.



Kids Definition of gulp (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of swallowing or breathing deeply
2 : a large swallow

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More from Merriam-Webster on gulp

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with gulp

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for gulp

Spanish Central: Translation of gulp

Nglish: Translation of gulp for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gulp for Arabic Speakers

Comments on gulp

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