intersperse was our Word of the Day on 12/12/2012. Hear the podcast!
Examples of intersperse in a sentence
You should intersperse these pictures evenly throughout the book.
Some seagulls were interspersed among the ducks.
Did You Know?
Intersperse derives from Latin interspersus, formed by combining the familiar prefix inter- ("between or among") with "sparsus," the past participle of spargere, meaning "to scatter." In "sparsus" one finds an ancestor to our adjective "sparse," as well as a relative of "spark." (The relationship of "spark" to a word that describes something being scattered about makes sense when you think of sparks bursting or scattering off a flame.) "Intersperse" is often followed by the preposition "with," as in "a straggling street of comfortable white and red houses, interspersed with abundant shady trees." (H.G. Wells, The War of the Worlds)
Origin and Etymology of intersperse
Latin interspersus interspersed, from inter- + sparsus, past participle of spargere to scatter — more at spark
First Known Use: 1566
INTERSPERSE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of intersperse for English Language Learners
: to put (something) at different places among other things
: to put things at different places within (something)
INTERSPERSE Defined for Kids
Definition of intersperse for Students
1 : to put (something) here and there among other things The publisher interspersed pictures throughout the book.
2 : to put things at various places in or among Sunshine was interspersed with clouds.
Seen and Heard
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