in·​ter·​pen·​e·​trate ˌin-tər-ˈpe-nə-ˌtrāt How to pronounce interpenetrate (audio)
interpenetrated; interpenetrating; interpenetrates

intransitive verb

: to penetrate mutually

transitive verb

: to penetrate between, within, or throughout : permeate
interpenetration noun

Examples of interpenetrate in a Sentence

with tie-dyeing, the dye does not interpenetrate the entire fabric
Recent Examples on the Web Water interpenetrates it, a gleaming, mercurial counter-spiral spooling into its open rockwork. Jennifer L. Roberts, The Atlantic, 9 Aug. 2023 Negative space and positive materiality interpenetrate in an extraordinary formal condensation of Cubist technique. Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times, 26 Oct. 2022 With the degree that the two countries interpenetrate each other’s elite and intelligence establishments, think the Russian military couldn’t get a kill shot on President Volodymyr Zelensky? Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, 12 Aug. 2022 Traditionalist Catholic ideas and values now interpenetrate conservative American political thought and nearly every political institution of consequence. Peter Hammond Schwartz, The New Republic, 3 Feb. 2021 Spaces and forms interpenetrated. Sculptural concrete projections that housed the chambers and the mayor’s office protruded from a modular facade of offices. Joseph Giovannini, New York Times, 4 Apr. 2020 In very recent work, Nikolay Prokof'ev and Boris Svistunov have proposed extremely clean examples involving two interpenetrating superfluids. Frank Wilczek, Scientific American, 16 Oct. 2019 Two of the figures embrace, and their bodies interpenetrate to form a new anthropomorphic — no, feminamorphic — tree. Sharon Mizota,, 7 July 2018 Nabokov’s stories and novels and autobiographical essays are the true reverse dreams, where futures pass and interpenetrate, and where the past, like John Dunne’s transparent fishing lures, shines. Nicholson Baker, New Republic, 21 Feb. 2018 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'interpenetrate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1810, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of interpenetrate was circa 1810

Dictionary Entries Near interpenetrate

Cite this Entry

“Interpenetrate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


in·​ter·​pen·​e·​trate ˌint-ər-ˈpen-ə-ˌtrāt How to pronounce interpenetrate (audio)
: to penetrate between, within, or throughout
: to penetrate mutually
interpenetration noun
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