Definition of Penetrate

1. Verb. Pass into or through, often by overcoming resistance. "The bullet penetrated her chest"

2. Verb. Come to understand.
Exact synonyms: Bottom, Fathom
Generic synonyms: Understand
Derivative terms: Penetration, Penetrative

3. Verb. Become clear or enter one's consciousness or emotions. "She was penetrated with sorrow"

4. Verb. Enter a group or organization in order to spy on the members. "The student organization was infiltrated by a traitor"
Exact synonyms: Infiltrate
Generic synonyms: Fall In, Get Together, Join
Derivative terms: Infiltration, Infiltrator

5. Verb. Make one's way deeper into or through. "The hikers did not manage to penetrate the dense forest"
Generic synonyms: Advance, Go On, March On, Move On, Pass On, Progress
Derivative terms: Penetration

6. Verb. Insert the penis into the vagina or anus of. "Did the molester penetrate the child?"
Generic synonyms: Enter, Infix, Insert, Introduce
Derivative terms: Penetration

7. Verb. Spread or diffuse through. "His campaign was riddled with accusations and personal attacks"

Definition of Penetrate

1. v. t. To enter into; to make way into the interior of; to effect an entrance into; to pierce; as, light penetrates darkness.

2. v. i. To pass; to make way; to pierce. Also used figuratively.

Definition of Penetrate

1. Verb. Manage to enter into. ¹

2. Verb. (figuratively) To achieve understanding despite (some obstacle thereto). ¹

3. Verb. To insert a penis into an opening, such as a vagina. ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Penetrate


Medical Definition of Penetrate

1. 1. To enter into; to make way into the interior of; to effect an entrance into; to pierce; as, light penetrates darkness. 2. To affect profoundly through the senses or feelings; to touch with feeling; to make sensible; to move deeply; as, to penetrate one's heart with pity. "The translator of Homer should penetrate himself with a sense of the plainness and directness of Homer's style." (M. Arnold) 3. To pierce into by the mind; to arrive at the inner contents or meaning of, as of a mysterious or difficult subject; to comprehend; to understand. "Things which here were too subtile for us to penetrate." (Ray) Origin: L. Penetratus, p.p. Of penetrare to penetrate; akin to penitus inward, inwardly, and perh. To pens with, in the power of, penus store of food, innermost part of a temple. Source: Websters Dictionary (01 Mar 1998)

Penetrate Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Penetrate

penetrant trait
penetrating injury
penetrating keratoplasty
penetrating trauma
penetrating ulcer
penetrating wound

Literary usage of Penetrate

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. The Golden Book of Marcus Aurelius by Marcus Aurelius, Meric Casaubon (1898)
"Rejoyce thy selfe with All Let thy minde penetrate, both into the effects, are. y trae simplicity, and modesty; and that all middle things betweene vertue ..."

2. The Catholic Encyclopedia: An International Work of Reference on the by Charles George Herbermann, Edward Aloysius Pace, Condé Bénoist Pallen, Thomas Joseph Shahan, John Joseph Wynne (1913)
"... penetrate into its spirit so that he may be able to impart the same to his singers, who must sing not only correctly but also with devotion. ..."

3. Annual Report by Illinois Farmers' Institute (1916)
"... penetrate the twig, burrowing downwards towards Its point of attachment, and making holes to the surface at Intervals thru which to discharge their ..."

4. The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon (1887)
"consisted in a laborious march ; and Julian had conquered, as soon a« he could penetrate into, a country which former princes had considered as inaccessible ..."

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