verb (used with object), im·bibed, im·bib·ing.
- to consume (liquids) by drinking; drink: He imbibed great quantities of iced tea.
- to absorb or soak up, as water, light, or heat: Plants imbibe moisture from the soil.
- to take or receive into the mind, as knowledge, ideas, or the like: to imbibe a sermon; to imbibe beautiful scenery.
verb (used without object), im·bibed, im·bib·ing.
- to drink, especially alcoholic beverages: Just a soft drink for me—I don’t imbibe.
- to absorb liquid or moisture.
- Archaic. to soak or saturate; imbue.
- to drink (esp alcoholic drinks)
- literary to take in or assimilate (ideas, facts, etc)to imbibe the spirit of the Renaissance
- (tr) to take in as if by drinkingto imbibe fresh air
- to absorb or cause to absorb liquid or moisture; assimilate or saturate
late 14c., from Old French imbiber, embiber “to soak into,” from Latin imbibere “absorb, drink in, inhale,” from assimilated form of in- “into, in, on, upon” (see in- (2)) + bibere “to drink,” related to potare “to drink,” from PIE *po(i)- “to drink” (see potion). Figurative sense of “mentally drink in” (knowledge, ideas, etc.) was the main one in classical Latin, first attested in English 1550s. Related: Imbibed; imbibing.