Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “absorb”

absorb

verb [T] uk   /əbˈzɔːb/ us    /-ˈzɔːrb/

absorb verb [T] (TAKE IN)

B2 to take something in, especially gradually: Plants absorb carbon dioxide. In cold climates, houses need to have walls that will absorb heat. Towels absorb moisture. The drug is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream. Our countryside is increasingly being absorbed by/into the large cities. to reduce the effect of a physical force, shock, or change: The barrier absorbed the main impact of the crash.

absorb verb [T] (UNDERSTAND)

C1 to understand facts or ideas completely and remember them: It's hard to absorb so much information.

absorb verb [T] (INTEREST VERY MUCH)

B2 to take up someone's attention completely: The project has absorbed her for several years.
Synonym

absorb verb [T] (PAY)

if a business absorbs the cost of something, it pays that cost easily: The school has absorbed most of the expenses so far, but it may have to offer fewer places next year to reduce costs.

absorb verb [T] (TAKE CONTROL)

if one company absorbs another company, it takes control of it and they become one company: Telecorp Holdings absorbed its Spanish subsidiary into its British headquarters.
(Definition of absorb from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of absorb?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “absorb” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

dawn on sb

If a fact dawns on you, you understand it after a period of not understanding it.

Word of the Day

The language of work

by Kate Woodford,
October 15, 2014
Most of us talk about our jobs. We tell our family and friends interesting or funny things that have happened in the workplace (=room where we do our job), we describe – and sometimes complain about – our bosses and colleagues and when we meet someone for the first time, we tell

Read More 

life tracking noun

October 20, 2014
the use of one or more devices or apps to monitor health, exercise, how time is spent, etc.

Read More