sneak

verb
\ ˈsnēk How to pronounce sneak (audio) \
sneaked\ ˈsnēkt How to pronounce sneak (audio) \ or snuck\ ˈsnək How to pronounce sneak (audio) \; sneaking

Definition of sneak

 (Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to go stealthily or furtively : slink snuck out early
2 : to act in or as if in a furtive manner
3 : to carry the football on a quarterback sneak

transitive verb

: to put, bring, or take in a furtive or artful manner sneak a smoke
sneak up on
: to approach or act on stealthily

sneak

noun

Definition of sneak (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a person who acts in a stealthy, furtive, or shifty manner
2a : a stealthy or furtive move
b : an unobserved departure or escape
3 : sneaker sense 2 usually used in plural

sneak

adjective

Definition of sneak (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : carried on secretly : clandestine
2 : occurring without warning : surprise a sneak attack

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Choose the Right Synonym for sneak

Verb

lurk, skulk, slink, sneak mean to behave so as to escape attention. lurk implies a lying in wait in a place of concealment and often suggests an evil intent. suspicious men lurking in alleyways skulk suggests more strongly cowardice or fear or sinister intent. something skulking in the shadows slink implies moving stealthily often merely to escape attention. slunk around the corner sneak may add an implication of entering or leaving a place or evading a difficulty by furtive or underhanded methods. sneaked out early

Sneaked vs. Snuck: Usage Guide

Verb

From its earliest appearance in print in the late 19th century as a dialectal and probably uneducated form, the past and past participle snuck has risen to the status of standard and to approximate equality with sneaked. It is most common in the U.S. and Canada but has also been spotted in British and Australian English.

Examples of sneak in a Sentence

Verb They tried to sneak into the movie without paying. She sneaked some cigars through customs. He snuck a few cookies out of the jar while his mother wasn't looking. They caught him trying to sneak food into the theater. Can I sneak a peek at your quiz answers? Noun What a rotten sneak! I should have known not to trust her. He ran a sneak up the middle for a touchdown. Adjective a sneak attack on the nation's capitol
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb After yet another loss late in a Grand Slam to a young superstar, each one a bit less competitive than the last, Williams is running out of options and running out of time to sneak in one more major title. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Time is running out for Serena Williams to win Grand Slam No. 24 — and she knows it," 18 Feb. 2021 Your daily snack is a great way to sneak in part of your RDI. Amy Thomas, Good Housekeeping, "10 Surprising Sources of Calcium," 17 Feb. 2021 The themes of the film are both timely and timeless, and the movie also manages to sneak in a charming romance in between the heavier scenes. Morgan Baila, refinery29.com, "Promising Young Woman," 18 Jan. 2021 At some point later, Ford said her son, then six weeks away from turning 17, denied attempting to sneak in the movies. Marc Freeman, sun-sentinel.com, "A mom got arrested for videotaping cops in public. Were her rights violated?," 14 Dec. 2020 The West is so crowded, though, that Golden State could even sneak into the top four — and thus, earn homecourt advantage in the first round — by ironing out some of its inconsistencies. Connor Letourneau, San Francisco Chronicle, "Warriors mailbag: Why they made the right call drafting James Wiseman at No. 2," 6 Feb. 2021 Turf races have been solid efforts; could sneak to the lead here. Michael Beychok, NOLA.com, "Check out Chok's Choices for Sunday's Fair Grounds races," 2 Jan. 2021 Chicago could still sneak in at 8-8 if the Cardinals lose. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Bizarre Ending to the NFL’s 2020 Season," 1 Jan. 2021 There isn’t a scenario in which any Cowboys player, as an alternate, could sneak into the Pro Bowl game. Michael Gehlken, Dallas News, "Cowboys left off Pro Bowl roster, ending a streak of 30 straight seasons," 21 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun On a press trip to cover TEFAF Maastricht, our small group got a sneak peek at upcoming exhibitions at the city’s largest art museums that had to be quickly transformed into digital displays to keep audiences engaged. Natasha Gural, Forbes, "The High And Low Of Van Gogh: From Blue Chip Masterpiece To Immersive Escapism," 28 Feb. 2021 Throughout, fans get a sneak peek into the hectic life and highs of a rising international superstar while following the teenager through lows like heartbreak, physical injuries, mental strain, and taxing tours. Marilyn La Jeunesse, Glamour, "10 Fascinating Moments From Billie Eilish’s Documentary The World’s a Little Blurry," 26 Feb. 2021 The teaser also gives a sneak peek at snail, pig, black swan, seashell and porcupine costumes that haven't been announced yet. Dana Rose Falcone, PEOPLE.com, "Introducing Russian Doll! Meet The Masked Singer Season 5’s Newest Character," 24 Feb. 2021 In an exclusive sneak peek in the new discovery+ show Mary McCartney Serves It Up, the Foo Fighters frontman impresses with his veggie lasagna. Anna Chan, Billboard, "Dave Grohl Impresses With His Lasagna on 'Mary McCartney Serves It Up': Exclusive Sneak Peek," 2 Feb. 2021 In addition to its taxi drone concept, Cadillac also offered a sneak peek at its Celestiq EV concept this week. Annie White, Car and Driver, "This Week in Cars: A Porsche Boxster, the Kona N, and a Flying Cadillac," 16 Jan. 2021 Which qualifies as a cliffhanger, except the sneak peek for next week shows Victoria is still around. oregonlive, "‘The Bachelor’ 2021: Portland-area bachelorettes try to survive group date, Victoria’s antics (recap)," 12 Jan. 2021 To close out the weekend, Ivy Park, Beyoncé’s popular athleisure line, released a sneak peek of its upcoming collaborative collection with sportswear giant Adidas. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, "Beyoncé’s New Ivy Park Collection Features Winter’s Top Trend — & Hailey Bieber," 25 Jan. 2021 Members are invited to join a free conference call at 10 a.m. Jan. 27 for a sneak peek of upcoming activities and to learn how to sign up for February programs. Carol Kovach, cleveland, "North Olmsted Senior Center finds ways to keep members engaged: A Place in the Sun," 19 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Get Ready: Katy Perry Has Released a Sneak Peek of Her New Song And the internet has receipts. Mehera Bonner, Marie Claire, "Get Ready: Katy Perry Has Released a Sneak Peek of Her New Song," 15 Mar. 2017

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

Verb

1594, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

circa 1643, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

circa 1859, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sneak

Verb

akin to Old English snīcan to sneak along, Old Norse snīkja

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Learn More about sneak

Statistics for sneak

Last Updated

1 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sneak.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sneak. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for sneak

sneak

verb

English Language Learners Definition of sneak

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to move quietly and secretly in order to avoid being noticed
: to take or bring (something) secretly and often quickly
British, old-fashioned : to tell someone (such as a parent or teacher) about something wrong that someone else has done

sneak

noun

English Language Learners Definition of sneak (Entry 2 of 3)

US, informal : a person who acts in a secret and usually dishonest way

sneak

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of sneak (Entry 3 of 3)

: done while others are not paying attention

sneak

verb
\ ˈsnēk How to pronounce sneak (audio) \
sneaked\ ˈsnēkt \ or snuck\ ˈsnək \; sneaking

Kids Definition of sneak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move, act, bring, put, or take in a sly or secret way Ina-Rae lifted her desktop to sneak peeks at her valentines …— Richard Peck, A Year Down Yonder

sneak

noun

Kids Definition of sneak (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who acts in a sly or secret way

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More from Merriam-Webster on sneak

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sneak

Nglish: Translation of sneak for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sneak for Arabic Speakers

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