sponge

noun
\ ˈspənj How to pronounce sponge (audio) \

Definition of sponge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : an elastic porous mass of interlacing horny fibers that forms the internal skeleton of various marine animals (phylum Porifera) and is able when wetted to absorb water
(2) : a piece of sponge (as for scrubbing)
(3) : a porous rubber or cellulose product used similarly to a sponge
b : any of a phylum (Porifera) of aquatic chiefly marine simple invertebrate animals that have a double-walled body of loosely aggregated cells with a skeleton supported by spicules or spongin and are filter feeders that are sessile as adults
2 : a pad (as of folded gauze) used in surgery and medicine (as to remove discharge)
3 : one who lives on others
4a : a soft mixture of yeast, liquid, and flour that is allowed to rise and then mixed with additional ingredients to create bread dough
b : a whipped dessert usually containing whites of eggs or gelatin
c : a metal (such as platinum) obtained in porous form usually by reduction without fusion titanium sponge
d : the egg mass of a crab
5 : an absorbent contraceptive device that is impregnated with spermicide and inserted into the vagina before sexual intercourse to cover the cervix

sponge

verb
sponged; sponging

Definition of sponge (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cleanse, wipe, or moisten with or as if with a sponge
2 : to erase or destroy with or as if with a sponge often used with out
3 : to get by sponging on another
4 : to absorb with or as if with or in the manner of a sponge

intransitive verb

1 : to absorb, soak up, or imbibe like a sponge
2 : to get something from or live on another by imposing on hospitality or good nature sponged off of her sister
3 : to dive or dredge for sponges

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Other Words from sponge

Noun

spongelike \ ˈspənj-​ˌlīk How to pronounce sponge (audio) \ adjective

Verb

sponger noun

Choose the Right Synonym for sponge

Noun

parasite, sycophant, toady, leech, sponge mean a usually obsequious flatterer or self-seeker. parasite applies to one who clings to a person of wealth, power, or influence or is useless to society. a jet-setter with an entourage of parasites sycophant adds to this a strong suggestion of fawning, flattery, or adulation. a powerful prince surrounded by sycophants toady emphasizes the servility and snobbery of the self-seeker. cultivated leaders of society and became their toady leech stresses persistence in clinging to or bleeding another for one's own advantage. a leech living off his family and friends sponge stresses the parasitic laziness, dependence, and opportunism of the cadger. a shiftless sponge, always looking for a handout

Examples of sponge in a Sentence

Noun finally told the sponge to move out of their house and to get a job Verb She sponged up the spilt milk. He sponged off his face. She sponged the dirt off her shirt. She always sponges meals from us.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The dry soils in the watershed are soaking up some of the melting snow like a sponge, leaving less water running into the Colorado and its tributaries. Kathy Tulumello, The Arizona Republic, 14 Aug. 2021 But the scale of the rain in Zhengzhou, capital of Henan province on the arid North China Plain, shocked the city and engulfed its sponge features. Seth Borenstein, The Christian Science Monitor, 9 Aug. 2021 This type of sponge is stiff but springy, just like the artificial cleaning sponges found in drugstores. Shi En Kim, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 July 2021 The drought has ravaged the region for decades, leaving the soil less like a sponge and more like pavement. Hannah Gard And Judson Jones, CNN, 16 July 2021 This multi-layer design has an insulated sponge that is 2mm thick and a breathable waterproof membrane. Chris Hachey, BGR, 15 June 2021 The simplicity of the sponge, Silva says, democratized makeup application. Lisette Voytko, Forbes, 2 June 2021 Backstage at any pre-pandemic New York Fashion Week show, you were almost always bound to find an Allure editor in the middle of it all, snapping photos of every flick of eyeliner, every bounce of a beauty sponge, and every swipe of lipstick. Nicola Dall'asen, Allure, 12 May 2021 Parachute has handmade, nourishing soap bars, natural sea sponge and other pampering products for a soothing bathing experience. oregonlive, 6 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Cleaner and sponge for removing soap scum, hard-water deposits and mildew. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, 13 Aug. 2021 That sets him apart, at least, from the customary authors of similar screeds, visitors from outside parachuting in for a week or two to sponge up local color for their takes. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 23 July 2021 Both the starfish and sponge shown in the image live in a deep-sea habitat where no light penetrates. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 30 July 2021 The deal gives the $2.5 trillion asset manager a position in the booming market for forest-carbon offsets, tradable assets that are created by paying landowners to not cut down trees and leave them standing to sponge carbon from the atmosphere. Ryan Dezember, WSJ, 21 June 2021 Extra points for the nonstick coating which only needs a swipe of a damp cloth or sponge to clean. Kim Fusaro, Glamour, 10 June 2021 Place a paper towel under the stain and sponge it with rubbing alcohol. Lauren Smith Mcdonough, Good Housekeeping, 29 Mar. 2021 Instead, gently dab stains with a cleaning solution and a clean cloth, paper towel, or sponge. Brett Martin, Popular Mechanics, 9 Apr. 2021 Then, spritz or sponge with cold water to rinse and blot until dry. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, 29 Mar. 2021

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

Noun

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for sponge

Noun

Middle English, from Old English, from Latin spongia, from Greek

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Time Traveler for sponge

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near sponge

-spondylus

sponge

sponge-bag

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Statistics for sponge

Last Updated

19 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sponge.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sponge. Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for sponge

sponge

noun

English Language Learners Definition of sponge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of light natural or artificial material that becomes soft when it is wet, is able to take in and hold liquid, and is used for washing or cleaning
: a type of sea animal from which natural sponges are made

sponge

verb

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

: to clean or wipe (something) with a sponge
: to put (paint) on a surface with a sponge
: to get money, food, etc., from (someone) without doing or paying anything in return

sponge

noun
\ ˈspənj How to pronounce sponge (audio) \

Kids Definition of sponge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a water animal that lives permanently attached to a solid surface (as the ocean bottom) and has a simple body of loosely connected cells with a skeleton supported by stiff fibers or hard particles
2 : a piece of springy absorbent material that forms the skeleton of a sponge or is manufactured and that is used for cleaning
3 : a pad of folded gauze used in surgery and medicine

sponge

verb
sponged; sponging

Kids Definition of sponge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to clean or wipe with a sponge
2 : to get something or live at the expense of another sponge off friends

sponge

noun
\ ˈspənj How to pronounce sponge (audio) \

Medical Definition of sponge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an elastic porous mass of interlacing horny fibers that forms the internal skeleton of various marine animals (phylum Porifera) and is able when wetted to absorb liquid
2a : a small pad made of multiple folds of gauze or of cotton and gauze used to mop blood from a surgical incision, to carry inhalant medicaments to the nose, or to cover a superficial wound as a dressing
b : a porous dressing (as of fibrin or gelatin) applied to promote wound healing
c : a plastic prosthesis used in chest cavities following lung surgery
3 : an absorbent contraceptive device impregnated with spermicide that is inserted into the vagina before sexual intercourse to cover the cervix and act as a barrier to sperm

sponge

transitive verb
sponged; sponging

Medical Definition of sponge (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cleanse, wipe, or moisten with or as if with a sponge sponge the patient's back

More from Merriam-Webster on sponge

Nglish: Translation of sponge for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about sponge

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