Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of escape
Meaning of escape by Wiktionary Dictionary


    Pelicans escaping from slamming wave


    Anglo-Norman and Old Northern French escaper ( = Old French eschaper, modern French échapper ), from Vulgar Latin *excapare, from Latin ex- ( “out” ) + capio ( “capture” ) .


    • IPA: /ɪˈskeɪp/, X-SAMPA: /I"skeIp/
    • Rhymes: -eɪp


    escape ( third-person singular simple present escapes present participle escaping, simple past and past participle escaped )

    1. ( intransitive ) To get free, to free oneself .
      The prisoners escaped by jumping over a wall .
    2. ( transitive ) To avoid ( any unpleasant person or thing ); to elude, get away from .
      He only got a fine and so escaped going to jail .
      The children climbed out of the window to escape the fire .
    3. ( intransitive ) To avoid capture; to get away with something, avoid punishment .
      Luckily, I escaped with only a fine .
    4. ( transitive ) To elude the observation or notice of; to not be seen or remembered by .
      The name of the hotel escapes me at present .
    5. ( transitive, computing ) To cause ( a single character, or all such characters in a string ) to be interpreted literally, instead of with any special meaning it would usually have in the same context, often by prefixing with another character .
      When using the "bash" shell, you can escape the ampersand character with a backslash .
      Brion escaped the double quote character on Windows by adding a second double quote within the literal .
    6. ( computing ) to halt a program or command by pressing a key ( such as the "Esc" key ) or combination of keys

    Usage notes


    escape ( plural: escapes )

    1. The act of leaving a dangerous or unpleasant situation .
      The prisoners made their escape by digging a tunnel .
    2. ( computing ) A key on most modern computer keyboards, sometimes abbreviated Esc, and typically programmed to cancel some current operation .
    3. ( programming ) The ASCII character represented by 27 ( decimal ) or 1B ( hexadecimal. )
      You forgot to insert an escape in the datastream .
    4. ( snooker ) A successful shot from a snooker position .



Explanation of escape by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. issue or leak, as from a small opening

    2. Gas escaped into the bedroom
    3. fail to experience

    4. escape potentially unpleasant consequences

    5. run away from confinement

    6. The convicted murderer escaped from a high security prison
    7. flee

    8. The burglars escaped before the police showed up
    9. remove oneself from a familiar environment, usually for pleasure or diversion

    10. We escaped to our summer house for a few days
    11. be incomprehensible to

    1. the act of escaping physically

    2. he made his escape from the mental hospital
      the canary escaped from its cage
    3. a means or way of escaping

    4. hard work was his escape from worry
      they installed a second hatch as an escape
      their escape route
    5. an avoidance of danger or difficulty

    6. that was a narrow escape
    7. an inclination to retreat from unpleasant realities through diversion or fantasy

    8. romantic novels were her escape from the stress of daily life
    9. nonperformance of something distasteful ( as by deceit or trickery ) that you are supposed to do

    10. that escape from the consequences is possible but unattractive
    11. a valve in a container in which pressure can build up ( as a steam boiler )

    12. the discharge of a fluid from some container

    13. they tried to stop the escape of gas from the damaged pipe
    14. a plant originally cultivated but now growing wild

    Definition of escape by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Escape v. t. [imp. & p. p. Escaped ; p. pr. & vb. n. Escaping.] [OE. escapen, eschapen, OF. escaper, eschaper, F. echapper, fr. LL. ex cappa out of one's cape or cloak; hence, to slip out of one's cape and escape. See 3d Cape, and cf. Scape, v.]
      1. To flee from and avoid; to be saved or exempt from; to shun; to obtain security from; as, “to escape danger”. “Sailors that escaped the wreck.” Shak.

      2. To avoid the notice of; to pass unobserved by; to evade; as, “the fact escaped our attention”.

      They escaped the search of the enemy. Ludlow.

    2. Escape, v. i.
      1. To flee, and become secure from danger; -- often followed by from or out of.

      Haste, for thy life escape, nor look behind Keble.

      2. To get clear from danger or evil of any form; to be passed without harm.

      Such heretics . . . would have been thought fortunate, if they escaped with life. Macaulay.

      3. To get free from that which confines or holds; -- used of persons or things; as, “to escape from prison, from arrest, or from slavery; gas escapes from the pipes; electricity escapes from its conductors.”

      To escape out of these meshes. Thackeray.

    3. Escape, n.
      1. The act of fleeing from danger, of evading harm, or of avoiding notice; deliverance from injury or any evil; flight; as, “an escape in battle; a narrow escape”; also, the means of escape; as, “a fire escape”.

      I would hasten my escape from the windy storm. Ps. lv. 8.

      2. That which escapes attention or restraint; a mistake; an oversight; also, transgression. [Obs.]

      I should have been more accurate, and corrected all those former escapes. Burton.

      3. A sally. “Thousand escapes of wit.” Shak.

      4. ( Law ) The unlawful permission, by a jailer or other custodian, of a prisoner's departure from custody.

      5. ( Bot. ) A plant which has escaped from cultivation.

      ☞ Escape is technically distinguishable from prison breach, which is the unlawful departure of the prisoner from custody, escape being the permission of the departure by the custodian, either by connivance or negligence. The term escape, however, is applied by some of the old authorities to a departure from custody by stratagem, or without force. Wharton.

      5. ( Arch. ) An apophyge.

      6. Leakage or outflow, as of steam or a liquid.

      7. ( Elec. ) Leakage or loss of currents from the conducting wires, caused by defective insulation.

      Escape pipe ( Steam Boilers ), a pipe for carrying away steam that escapes through a safety valve. -- Escape valve ( Steam Engine ), a relief valve; a safety valve. See under Relief, and Safety. -- Escape wheel ( Horol. ), the wheel of an escapement.