\ ˈsēp How to pronounce seep (audio) \
seeped; seeping; seeps

Definition of seep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to flow or pass slowly through fine pores or small openings : ooze water seeped in through a crack
2a : to enter or penetrate slowly fear of nuclear war had seeped into the national consciousness— Tip O'Neill
b : to become diffused or spread a sadness seeped through his being— Agnes S. Turnbull



Definition of seep (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a spot where a fluid (such as water, oil, or gas) contained in the ground oozes slowly to the surface and often forms a pool
b : a small spring
2 : seepage

Other Words from seep


seepy \ ˈsē-​pē How to pronounce seep (audio) \ adjective

Examples of seep in a Sentence

Verb Blood was seeping through the bandage. The chemicals seeped into the ground.
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Remove from heat, cover and set aside to seep for half an hour. Priscilla Totiyapungprasert, The Arizona Republic, 16 Dec. 2021 With a garden hose, inspect your bus's windows for leaks, which spring up when the exterior caulk ages and dries out, or peels away, allowing rainwater to seep in. Will Sutherland, Popular Mechanics, 14 July 2021 Patterns and experiences seep into our brains from working with and watching others over long stretches. Andy Kessler, WSJ, 19 Dec. 2021 Musk believed an epoxy-like material could be applied to the ablative chamber, which would then seep into the cracks and fill them. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, 1 Dec. 2021 In his routine coverage, Wallace occasionally allowed foul Fox News sensibilities to seep into his commentary, as Media Matters has documented. Washington Post, 9 Dec. 2021 Satisfied shoppers credit this affordable protector with guarding their mattresses against potty training toddlers, pet accidents, significant spills, and even childbirth without shifting or allowing any leakage to seep into the mattress underneath. Averi Baudler,, 24 Nov. 2021 Noel Quinn, the chief executive of HSBC, acknowledged at the same conference that Evergrande’s challenges might seep further into the equity and credit markets. Keith Bradsher, New York Times, 24 Sep. 2021 This often allows water to seep between cabin panels in the overhead or around the windows, forming the droplets that land on your face or obscure your view outside. Eric Tegler, Forbes, 7 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Secrets, fears and distrust seep through Gunthrum as Flanagan shows how these issues become a part of the daily fabric of the residents’ lives. Oline H. Cogdill,, 21 Dec. 2021 When uncertainty and instability seep into the culture during crisis and change, employees operate in survival mode — a state of rushed confusion and vulnerability to workplace stress. Loubna Noureddin, Forbes, 8 Nov. 2021 Through such holes in the storytelling, the play’s richest emotions seep. Jesse Green, New York Times, 17 Oct. 2021 Someone threw 16 fire extinguishers onto the shop below, according to lawyer Cris Feldman, which punctured the roof, letting rainwater seep in and damaging merchandise. Abigail Rosenthal, Chron, 5 July 2021 One problem is that, despite an organization’s public promises, cognitive biases seep into all types of decision-making, including recruitment choices. Brian J. Lucas, Scientific American, 17 Sep. 2021 The person placed a laminated poster near the threshold, which apparently helped the water seep under the door and into the building. Alex Riggins, San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 Aug. 2021 There’s also some possibility of seeing smoke from wildfires near Warm Springs seep into the valleys Monday. oregonlive, 21 June 2021 Interestingly, the seep is not on the eponymous trail, but a few yards ahead on the Little Elden Trail. Mare Czinar, The Arizona Republic, 11 June 2021

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


1790, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1824, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for seep


alteration of earlier sipe, from Middle English sipen, from Old English sipian; akin to Middle Low German sipen to seep

Learn More About seep

Dictionary Entries Near seep

see over



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Statistics for seep

Last Updated

15 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Seep.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for seep



English Language Learners Definition of seep

: to flow or pass slowly through small openings in something


\ ˈsēp How to pronounce seep (audio) \
seeped; seeping

Kids Definition of seep

: to flow slowly through small openings Water seeped into the basement.

More from Merriam-Webster on seep

Nglish: Translation of seep for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of seep for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about seep


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