leap

verb
\ ˈlēp How to pronounce leap (audio) \
leaped or leapt\ ˈlēpt How to pronounce leap (audio) also  ˈlept How to pronounce leap (audio) \; leaping\ ˈlē-​piŋ How to pronounce leap (audio) \

Definition of leap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to spring free from or as if from the ground : jump leap over a fence a fish leaps out of the water
2a : to pass abruptly from one state or topic to another the difficult leap from college to the workplace
b : to act precipitately leaped at the chance

transitive verb

: to pass over by leaping leaped the wall

leap

noun

Definition of leap (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : an act of leaping : spring, bound
b(1) : a place leaped over or from
(2) : the distance covered by a leap
2a : a sudden passage or transition a great leap forward
b : a choice made in an area of ultimate concern a leap of faith
by leaps and bounds
: with extraordinary rapidity a town growing by leaps and bounds

Other Words from leap

Verb

leaper \ ˈlē-​pər How to pronounce leap (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for leap

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of leap in a Sentence

Verb The cat suddenly leaped into the air. Fish were leaping out of the water. He leaped off the bridge. The boys leaped over the stream. The horse leaped the stone wall. When the alarm went off, she leapt out of bed. Noun She made a graceful leap into the air. He ran and took a flying leap over the stream. He won the high jump with a leap of six feet. the leap from childhood to adulthood She has shown great leaps in ability. Technology has taken a great leap forward. It required a leap of the imagination to picture how the project would look when it was completed. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But when Amin gave his expulsion order, the British government didn't leap into action. Lucy Fulford, CNN, 18 Sep. 2022 Her soldiers flip over each other’s backs, leap into the air, turn spears into throat-skewering projectiles. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 16 Sep. 2022 During the siege of an adobe church in which nighttime attackers leap through high windows, the interior becomes like an otherworldly stage, with women holding up candles to illuminate deadly combat. Kristin M. Jones, WSJ, 30 Aug. 2022 But if the tax and climate bill championed by Senate Democrats becomes law, those figures would leap to $130 or $180 per metric ton. Nicholas Kusnetz, San Antonio Express-News, 6 Aug. 2022 By Richard Chiappone; Crooked Lane Books; 2021; 304 pages; $27.99 Homer, Alaska, doesn’t leap to mind as an obvious setting for a political thriller, especially one where the outcome could determine an American presidential race. David James, Anchorage Daily News, 31 July 2022 Suni Lee is ready to leap into the new year with confidence. Michelle Lee, Peoplemag, 15 Sep. 2022 But when Mountcastle faces Toronto, the ball tends to leap off his bat. Andy Kostka, Baltimore Sun, 15 June 2022 Gunfire rains down as the women run and leap off the boat, plunging into the Thames. Kat Rosenfield, EW.com, 11 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun While the iPhone 14 Pro is a significant upgrade over the previous generation, the isn’t quite as huge of a leap forward. Jacob Siegal, BGR, 19 Sep. 2022 With a leap, Orioles left fielder Austin Hays reached toward the ball and missed the catch. Andy Kostka, Baltimore Sun, 30 July 2022 But with a leap of 56 feet, 4 inches on his sixth and final attempt, Ihemeje did move up to finish fifth, one spot ahead of the United States’ Donald Scott. oregonlive, 23 July 2022 National indoor champion won high jump at Greenfield-Central with leap of 6-11, top mark in Indiana outdoors this year. David Woods, The Indianapolis Star, 27 May 2022 Lacy won the long jump at the Euclid Relays with a leap of 21-3. cleveland, 11 May 2022 The gut punch of a generation leap—the ache of knowing that your tech is officially outmoded—was nowhere to be found. WIRED, 3 Sep. 2022 Though, blending his style with the indie rock soundscapes of Soccer Mommy didn’t turn out to be much of a sonic leap. Ej Panaligan, Variety, 23 Aug. 2022 The Nevera is said to be capable of a 1.85-second leap to 60 mph and a quarter-mile time of 8.6 seconds. Dan Edmunds, Car and Driver, 17 Aug. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of leap

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for leap

Verb and Noun

Middle English lepen, from Old English hlēapan; akin to Old High German hlouffan to run

Learn More About leap

Time Traveler for leap

Time Traveler

The first known use of leap was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near leap

Lea oak

leap

leap at

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for leap

Last Updated

30 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Leap.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/leap. Accessed 4 Oct. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for leap

leap

verb
\ ˈlēp How to pronounce leap (audio) \
leaped or leapt\ ˈlēpt , ˈlept \; leaping\ ˈlē-​piŋ \

Kids Definition of leap

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to jump or cause to jump from a surface Fish leaped out of the water.
2 : to move, act, or pass quickly He leaped out of bed.

Other Words from leap

leaper \ ˈlē-​pər \ noun

leap

noun

Kids Definition of leap (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of springing up or over : jump
2 : a place that is jumped over or from … Lizzie took the leap, stumbled … and fell.— Anna Sewell, Black Beauty
3 : the distance that is jumped a five foot leap

More from Merriam-Webster on leap

Nglish: Translation of leap for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of leap for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!