1. pass into or through, often by overcoming resistance

- The bullet penetrated her chest

Similar word(s): perforate

Definition categories: contact, enter

2. come to understand

Similar word(s): bottom, fathom

Definition categories: cognition, understand

3. become clear or enter one's consciousness or emotions

- she was penetrated with sorrow

Similar word(s): click, dawn

Definition categories: cognition

4. enter a group or organization in order to spy on the members

Similar word(s): infiltrate

Definition categories: social, join

5. make one's way deeper into or through

- The hikers did not manage to penetrate the dense forest

Definition categories: motion, advance, progress

6. insert the penis into the vagina or anus of

- Did the molester penetrate the child?

Definition categories: contact, enter, infix, insert, introduce

7. spread or diffuse through

- music penetrated the entire building

Similar word(s): diffuse, imbue, interpenetrate, permeate, pervade, riddle

Definition categories: contact, penetrate, perforate

Sentences with penetrate as a verb:

- Light penetrates darkness.

- I could not penetrate Burke's opaque rhetoric.

- to penetrate one's heart with pity