leak

verb
\ ˈlēk How to pronounce leak (audio) \
leaked; leaking; leaks

Definition of leak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to enter or escape through an opening usually by a fault or mistake fumes leak in
b : to let a substance or light in or out through an opening The roof was leaking.
2a : to become known despite efforts at concealment confidential information leaked out
b : to be the source of an information leak

transitive verb

1 : to permit to enter or escape through or as if through a leak The roof leaks water.
2 : to give out (information) surreptitiously leaked the story to the press

leak

noun

Definition of leak (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a crack or hole that usually by mistake admits or lets escape
b : something that permits the admission or escape of something else usually with prejudicial effect
2 : the act, process, or an instance of leaking
3 sometimes vulgar : an act of urinating used especially in the phrase take a leak

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Other Words from leak

Verb

leaker \ ˈlē-​kər How to pronounce leaker (audio) \ noun

Noun

leakproof \ ˈlēk-​ˌprüf How to pronounce leakproof (audio) \ adjective

Examples of leak in a Sentence

Verb

The boat was leaking water. The cracked pipe leaked fumes into the room. Fumes leaked through the crack in the pipe. Air leaked out of the tire. Water was leaking through a hole in the roof. Someone leaked the story to the press.

Noun

The boat had developed a bad leak. The landlord said he would fix the leak in the roof. a slow leak of the chemical When a reporter revealed classified information, the source of the leak was investigated. Security is high because of a fear of leaks before negotiations have been finished.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Until now, the Espionage Act has been used to prosecute spies and employees with classified clearances who violated their oath by leaking to the press. Clarence Page, chicagotribune.com, "Who is a journalist? Don’t let the government decide.," 4 June 2019 Not through the standard bipartisan process, not by advising the judiciary committee colleagues and committee staff through proper channels, oh, but by leaking it to the press. Fox News, "Kavanaugh to speak to Senate Judiciary Committee staffers," 18 Sep. 2018 Arnault has also been suspected of violating century-old Nobel rules by leaking names of winners of the prestigious award. Washington Post, "Sweden charges man at center of Nobel scandal," 13 June 2018 Her half-sister Samantha Markle has added to the controversy by leaking details on their father even as Kensington Palace has requested that journalists respect his privacy. Faith Karimi, CNN, "Behind Thomas Markle's special relationship with Meghan Markle," 16 May 2018 According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a faucet leaking just one drip per minute wastes about 34 gallons of water per year. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "9 Home Mistakes That Are Costing You a LOT of Money," 15 May 2019 Microsoft’s Edge on Chromium browser had previously leaked, with early builds available on file-sharing sites—though without Microsoft’s official endorsement, users downloaded at their own risk. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft releases alpha versions of its Microsoft Edge on Chromium browser for you to try," 8 Apr. 2019 Now the program needs to keep it from leaking right back out through the gaping holes across the lineup. Jim Vertuno, The Seattle Times, "After 10-4 finish, Longhorns have to plug up defense," 13 Apr. 2019 Instead of being mounted directly on the walls, the televisions are hung on panels, preventing the noise of talking heads from leaking into neighboring quarters. Howie Kahn, WSJ, "The Hotel Where You’ll Be ‘Sleep-Coached’ Into Bed," 27 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Two houses in Rancho Bernardo’s Westwood neighborhood were evacuated early Monday afternoon due to a natural gas leak at a nearby home under fumigation. Elizabeth Marie Himchak, Rancho Bernardo, "Homes evacuated in Rancho Bernardo due to gas leak," 17 July 2017 After checking ducts, evaluate all the windows and doors for leaks and cracks, and add new weather stripping if necessary. Cincinnati.com, "Column: Summer weatherization to keep you cool," 30 June 2017 If the container uses ice packs, it must be sealed and in a leak-proof container with the contents clearly marked. Cynthia Drescher, CNT, "TSA Finds 20-Pound Lobster in Checked Bag," 27 June 2017 At 3:23 p.m., BGE had mitigated the leak, fire vehicles were leaving and the Sheriff's Office was preparing to reopen the road, Fire & EMS spokespersons Rich Gardiner and Jenn Chenworth reported on Facebook. Staff Report, The Aegis, "Bel Air's Moore's Mill Road reopens after gas leak detected Friday afternoon," 2 June 2017 Truth is being mean leaves more leaks in your camp than the titanic and I .. Christopher Rosen, EW.com, "Ruby Rose says 'being mean doesn't suit me' after Katy Perry tweets," 21 May 2017 But strep also caused a leak in the BBB near the amygdala, the seat of fear and anxiety, and the lateral hypothalamus, where our sense of hunger begins. Pamela Weintraub, Discover Magazine, "Hidden Invaders," 29 Mar. 2017 For their part, Trump's aides look on many of those holdovers from the last administration with suspicion, blaming them for leaks. Tampa Bay Times, "Trump chooses McMaster as national security adviser," 20 Feb. 2017 Your Utility Company In the event of a power outage or suspected gas leak, your utility company is better equipped to handle the problem than emergency responders. Kelly O'sullivan, Woman's Day, "11 Phone Numbers Every Woman Should Have On Speed Dial," 15 Feb. 2017

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for leak

Verb and Noun

Middle English leken, liken, from or akin to Middle Dutch leken; akin to Old English hlec leaky, Old High German zelehhan, Old Norse leka to leak and probably to Old English leccan to moisten, Middle Irish legaid it melts

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Statistics for leak

Last Updated

9 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for leak

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

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More Definitions for leak

leak

verb

English Language Learners Definition of leak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to let something (such as a liquid or gas) in or out through a hole in a surface
of a liquid, gas, etc. : to come in or go out through a hole in a surface
: to give (secret information) to someone so that it becomes known to the public

leak

noun

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

: a hole in a surface that lets something (such as a liquid or gas) pass in or out
: an occurrence in which something (such as a liquid or gas) passes through a hole in a surface
: a situation in which people learn about information that is supposed to be secret

leak

verb
\ ˈlēk How to pronounce leak (audio) \
leaked; leaking

Kids Definition of leak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to enter or escape or let enter or escape through an opening usually by accident Fumes were leaking in.
2 : to let a substance or light in or out through an opening The roof was leaking.
3 : to make or become known Don't leak this secret.

leak

noun

Kids Definition of leak (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a crack or hole that accidentally lets something pass in or out I fixed the boat's leak.
2 : the accidental or secret passing of information a security leak
3 : an act or instance of leaking a slow leak

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More from Merriam-Webster on leak

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with leak

Spanish Central: Translation of leak

Nglish: Translation of leak for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of leak for Arabic Speakers

Comments on leak

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