penetrate Meaning, definition in Cambridge English Dictionary
Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

Meaning of "penetrate" - English Dictionary

See all translations

penetrateverb

uk   us   /ˈpen.ɪ.treɪt/

penetrate verb (MOVE INTO)

[I or T] to move into or through something: Amazingly, the bullet did not penetrate his brain. In a normal winter, the frost penetrates deeply enough to kill off insect eggs in the soil. [ T] to succeed in becoming part of an organization, etc. and working within it : The organization had been penetrated by a spy. The company has been successful in penetrating overseas markets this year (= it has started selling its products in them). [I or T] to reach or affect something: These changes had not yet penetrated as far west as the mountains of Merioneth. [T] If your eyes penetrate somewhere dark, you manage to see through it: Our eyes couldn't penetrate the dark/the gloom of the inner cave. [T] When a man penetrates his partner during sex, he puts his penis into his or her body.

penetrate verb (UNDERSTAND)

[I or T] to study or investigate something in order to understand it: It's hard to penetrate her mind. He penetrates deeper into the artist's life in the second volume of his autobiography.
(Definition of penetrate from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of penetrate?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “penetrate” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day
field event

a sports event in which athletes take part one after the other rather than racing or competing together

Word of the Day

Are you a glass-half-full person? (Everyday Idioms)
Are you a glass-half-full person? (Everyday Idioms)
by Kate Woodford,
July 29, 2015
A reader of this blog recently asked for a post on idioms that are used in everyday English. This seemed like a reasonable request. After all, if you are going to make the effort to learn a set of English idioms, you want those idioms to be useful. The question, then, was

Read More 

exoskeleton noun
exoskeleton noun
July 27, 2015
a robotic device which goes around the legs and part of the body of a person who cannot walk and allows them to move independently and in an upright position The device, known as an exoskeleton, is strapped to the outside of a person’s limbs and can then be controlled by them.

Read More