pervade

verb
per·​vade | \pər-ˈvād \
pervaded; pervading

Definition of pervade 

transitive verb

: to become diffused throughout every part of

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Did You Know?

English speakers borrowed "pervade" in the mid-17th century from Latin pervadere, meaning "to go through." "Pervadere," in turn, was formed by combining the prefix per-, meaning "through," with the verb vadere, meaning "to go." Synonyms of "pervade" include "permeate," "impregnate," and "saturate." "Pervade" stresses a spreading diffusion throughout every part of a whole ("art and music pervade every aspect of their lives"). "Permeate" implies diffusion specifically throughout a material thing ("a green dye permeating a garment"). "Impregnate" suggests a forceful influence or effect on something throughout ("impregnate the cotton with alcohol"). "Saturate" is used when nothing more may be taken up or absorbed ("cloth saturated with water").

Examples of pervade in a Sentence

A feeling of great sadness pervades the film. Art and music pervade every aspect of their lives.

Recent Examples on the Web

Impressionistic string arpeggios, along with other rapid figures, moody thick chords and glissandi pervade much of the piece. Mark Swed, latimes.com, "Salonen's 'Pollux' supplies some grunge for L.A. Phil tour," 16 Apr. 2018 When Forman sold his new coach, Iowa State’s Fred Hoiberg, as the missing touch and the Bulls missed the playoffs in 2015-16 with virtually the same roster, a feeling of finality pervaded the organization. K.c. Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "20 years since dissolution of the dynasty, Bulls still a long way from the top," 10 June 2018 The turning on was supplied to Stockhausen by the Eastern mysticism, psychedelic reverie and free love that pervaded the Bay Area hippie culture. Mark Swed, latimes.com, "Four radical and radically original pieces of music that blew up the modernist status quo in 1968," 21 Apr. 2018 Eventually a miasma of unreality comes to pervade the book. Annika Neklason, The Atlantic, "‘The Trust of the Reader Is Distrusted by Roth’," 24 May 2018 By the end of this game, coach Steve Kerr was down to a seven-man rotation — trusting only Shaun Livingston and Jordan Bell off the bench — as noticeable exhaustion pervaded his squad. Bruce Jenkins, San Francisco Chronicle, "Now it’s nervous time for the Warriors," 22 May 2018 Dark and violent memories sprout up; grief pervades; animals often turn up dead or in the process. Brandon Yu, San Francisco Chronicle, "Melissa Stein’s poetry explores the beautiful, awful reality of being female," 15 May 2018 Some analysts argue that the malfeasance and self-dealing that pervaded 70 years of one-party rule by the PRI are dyed into the fabric of Mexican governance. Kevin Sieff, Washington Post, "Mexico’s new president is a populist who railed against the ruling class. But he’s no Trump.," 1 July 2018 Gone are the days of delusional optimism that pervaded the franchise. Tim Bontemps, chicagotribune.com, "For Jeanie Buss, NBA free agency marks the next step in a resurgence for Lakers," 26 June 2018

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

1659, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pervade

Latin pervadere to go through, pervade, from per- through + vadere to go — more at per-, wade

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Statistics for pervade

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pervade

The first known use of pervade was in 1659

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More Definitions for pervade

pervade

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pervade

: to spread through all parts of (something) : to exist in every part of (something)

pervade

verb
per·​vade | \pər-ˈvād \
pervaded; pervading

Kids Definition of pervade

: to spread through all parts of : permeate Spicy smells pervaded the whole house.

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