English dictionary

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English verb: penetrate

1. penetrate (contact) pass into or through, often by overcoming resistance

SamplesThe bullet penetrated her chest.


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something.
Somebody ----s PP

Broader (hypernym)come in, enter, get in, get into, go in, go into, move into

Narrower (hyponym)break, creep in, cut, diffuse, dig into, filter, foray, force, grain, honeycomb, imbue, immerse, ingrain, interpenetrate, interpenetrate, ooze through, penetrate, percolate, permeate, permeate, permeate, pervade, pierce, pierce, pierce, plunge, poke into, poke into, probe, riddle, sink in, sneak in, storm, strike, thrust, tunnel

2. penetrate (cognition) come to understand

Synonymsbottom, fathom

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Somebody ----s somebody.
Somebody ----s that CLAUSE

Broader (hypernym)understand

3. penetrate (cognition) become clear or enter one's consciousness or emotions

SamplesIt dawned on him that she had betrayed him.
She was penetrated with sorrow.

Synonymsclick, come home, dawn, fall into place, get across, get through, sink in

Pattern of useSomething ----s


4. penetrate (social) enter a group or organization in order to spy on the members

SamplesThe student organization was infiltrated by a traitor.


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something

Broader (hypernym)fall in, get together, join

5. penetrate (motion) make one's way deeper into or through

SamplesThe hikers did not manage to penetrate the dense forest.

Pattern of useSomebody ----s PP

Broader (hypernym)advance, go on, march on, move on, pass on, progress

6. penetrate (contact) insert the penis into the vagina or anus of

SamplesDid the molester penetrate the child?.

Pattern of useSomebody ----s somebody

Broader (hypernym)enter, infix, insert, introduce

7. penetrate (contact) spread or diffuse through

SamplesAn atmosphere of distrust has permeated this administration.
Music penetrated the entire building.
His campaign was riddled with accusations and personal attacks.

Synonymsdiffuse, imbue, interpenetrate, permeate, pervade, riddle

Pattern of useSomething ----s something

Broader (hypernym)penetrate, perforate

Narrower (hyponym)spiritise, spiritize

Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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