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en- +‎ gulf


  • IPA(key): /ɪŋˈɡʌlf/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ʌlf


engulf (third-person singular simple present engulfs, present participle engulfing, simple past and past participle engulfed)

  1. (transitive) To overwhelm.
    Desperation engulfed her after her daughter's death.
    • 2013 June 18, Simon Romero, "Protests Widen as Brazilians Chide Leaders," New York Times (retrieved 21 June 2013):
      Shaken by the biggest challenge to their authority in years, Brazil’s leaders made conciliatory gestures on Tuesday to try to defuse the protests engulfing the nation’s cities.
    • 1934, The Modern Monthly, vol 8, page 308:
      The blank spaces of Mallarmé, the silence of Maesterlinck, the inaniloquous repetitive babblings of Gertrude Stein are the abyss which threatens to engulf creative effort if it continues in this direction.
  2. (transitive) To surround; to cover; to submerge.
    Only Noah and his family survived when the Flood engulfed the world.
  3. (transitive) To cast into a gulf.