AskDefine | Define sap

Dictionary Definition

sap

Noun

1 a watery solution of sugars, salts, and minerals that circulates through the vascular system of a plant
2 a person who lacks good judgment [syn: fool, saphead, muggins, tomfool]
3 a piece of metal covered by leather with a flexible handle; used for hitting people [syn: blackjack, cosh]

Verb

1 deplete; "exhaust one's savings"; "We quickly played out our strength" [syn: run down, exhaust, play out, tire]
2 excavate the earth beneath [also: sapping, sapped]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

rfc-level check placement of Pronunciation

Pronunciation

  • /sæp/
  • Rhymes with: -æp

Etymology 1

From sæp; akin to Old High German saf, German saft, Dutch sap, Icelandic safi; of uncertain origin; possibly akin to Latin sapere ‘to taste, to be wise’, sapa ‘must or new wine boiled thick’; compare sapid and sapient.

Noun

  1. The juice of plants of any kind, especially the ascending and descending juices or circulating fluid essential to nutrition.
  2. The sapwood, or alburnum, of a tree.
  3. In the context of "slang|countable": A simpleton; a saphead; a milksop; a naive person.
  4. A leather-covered hand weapon; a blackjack.
Translations
juice of plant
  • Czech: míza
  • Dutch: sap
  • Finnish: mahla
  • French: sève
  • German: Saft
  • Italian: linfa
  • Korean: (, jeub, jeup), 수액 (樹液, suaeg, -aek)
  • Norwegian: sevje
  • Russian: сок (sok)
  • Spanish: savia
sapwood of a tree
slang: saphead
  • Dutch: slappeling, imbeciel, idioot, simpele
  • Finnish: hölmö
  • Italian: sempliciotto, imbecille, stupido
  • Norwegian: tosk
a leather-covered hand weapon
  • Italian: manganello
Translations to be checked

Etymology 2

From saper (compare Spanish zapar and Italian zapare) from sape ‘sort of scythe’, from sappa ‘sort of mattock’.

Noun

  1. A narrow ditch or trench made from the foremost parallel toward the glacis or covert way of a besieged place by digging under cover of gabions, etc.
Derived terms
Translations
narrow ditch or trench
  • Finnish: juoksuhauta (most often "juoksuhauta" would translate into English as "trench". In Finnish the same word covers also "sap")

Verb

  1. To subvert by digging or wearing away; to mine; to undermine; to destroy the foundation of.
    • Nor safe their dwellings were, for sapped by floods, / Their houses fell upon their household gods. — John Dryden
  2. In the context of "transitive|military": To pierce with saps.
  3. To make unstable or infirm; to unsettle; to weaken.
  4. To gradually weaken.
    • to sap one’s conscience
  5. To proceed by mining, or by secretly undermining; to execute saps — rfdate provide real quoteW. P. Craighill
    • Both assaults carried on by sapping. — The Tatler
  6. To strike with a sap (with a blackjack).
Translations
undermine
  • Dutch: ondermijnen, aantasten, ondergraven
  • Finnish: heikentää
  • Italian: scalzare, minare
pierce with saps
make unstable; weaken
gradually weaken
  • Dutch: knagen aan, aantasten
proceed by mining
  • Dutch: ondergraven

Dutch

Noun

  1. sap (fluid in plants)
  2. juice

Romani

Noun

sap

Turkish

Noun

sap

Noun

sap

Extensive Definition

"Sap" redirects here. For other uses see sap (disambiguation).
Sap is a fluid transported in xylem cells (tracheids or vessel elements) or phloem sieve tube elements of a plant. Fluid found in the vacuole of other cells is sometimes referred to as "cell sap". Other liquid compounds found in plants or exuded by plants, such as latex, resins, and mucilage are sometimes incorrectly referred to as sap.
Xylem sap consists primarily of water, with hormones, mineral elements, and other nutrients dissolved in the sap. Transport of sap in xylem is generally "basipetal", or upward from the roots toward the leaves. Over the past century, there has been some controversy regarding the mechanism of xylem sap transport, although most plant scientists today agree that the bulk of the evidence supports the cohesion-tension theory of xylem sap transport. Phloem sap consists primarily of water, with sugars, hormones, and mineral elements dissolved in the sap. Phloem sap transport occurs from sources (a location where carbohydrates are produced or stored) toward sinks (a location where carbohydrates are utilized). The pressure flow hypothesis proposes a mechanism for phloem sap transport.
Maple syrup is made from reduced maple tree xylem sap. In some countries (e.g., Russia or Latvia) it is common to collect the early spring sap of birch trees (so called "birch juice") for human consumption; the sap can be used fresh or fermented. "Birch juice" is slightly sweet and very refreshing, but tends to become bitter in late spring; the rule of thumb is to collect it before any green leaves have appeared.

See also

References

  • Angeles, G., B.J. Bond, J.S. Boyer, T.J. Brodribb, J.R. Brooks, M.J. Burns, J.M. Cavender-Bares, M.J. Clearwater, H. Cochard, J.P. Comstock, S.D. Davis, J.-C. Domec, L.A. Donovan, F.W. Ewers, B.L. Gartner, U.G. Hacke, T.M. Hinckley, N.M. Holbrook, H.G. Jones, K.L. Kavanagh, B.E. Law, J. Lopez-Portillo, C. Lovisolo, T.A. Martin, J. Martinez-Vilalta, S. Mayr, F.C. Meinzer, P.J. Melcher, M. Mencuccini, S.S. Mulkey, A. Nardini, H. Neufeld, J.B. Passioura, W.T. Pockman, R.B. Pratt, S. Rambal, H. Richter, L. Sack, S. Salleo, A. Schubert, P.J. Schulte, J.P. Sparks, J.S. Sperry, R.O. Teskey, and M.T. Tyree. 2004. The cohesion-tension theory. New Phytologist 163:451-452.
  • Raven, P.H., Evert, R.F. and Eichhorn, S.E. 1999. Biology of Plants. W.H. Freeman.
  • Taiz, L. and Zeiger, E. 1998. Plant Physiology. Sinauer Associates, Sunderland, Mass.
sap in Arabic: نسغ
sap in Bulgarian: Мъзга
sap in French: Sève
sap in Indonesian: Getah
sap in Lithuanian: Sula
sap in Dutch: Sap (plant)
sap in Polish: Sok mleczny
sap in Portuguese: Seiva bruta
sap in Swedish: Sav

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abate, abri, approach trench, asshole, attenuate, axiom, babe, beverage, blood, blunt, boob, booby, bore, bunker, burrow, center, chump, cinch, communication trench, core, countermine, coupure, cramp, credulous person, cripple, cull, damp, dampen, deaden, debilitate, delve, dematerialize, deplete, destroy, devitalize, dig, dig out, dike, ding-a-ling, dingbat, dingdong, disable, disembody, distillate, distillation, ditch, double sap, drain, dredge, drill, drink, drive, dugout, dull, dupe, easy mark, easy pickings, elixir, enervate, enfeeble, entrenchment, essence, essential, etherealize, eviscerate, excavate, exhaust, extenuate, fabric, fall guy, fire trench, fish, flower, fluid, fluid extract, fluid mechanics, flying sap, focus, fool, fortified tunnel, fosse, foxhole, fundamental, furrow, gallery, galoot, gist, gobe-mouches, goof, gouge, gouge out, gravamen, greener, greenhorn, greeny, groove, grub, gruel, gudgeon, gull, heart, honeycomb, hydraulics, hydrogeology, hypostasis, inner essence, innocent, jerk, jerk-off, juice, kernel, klutz, knock out, latex, lay low, leadpipe cinch, liquid, liquid extract, liquor, lower, mark, marrow, material, matter, meat, medium, milk, mine, mitigate, moat, monkey, mutt, nub, nucleus, nuts and bolts, overset, overthrow, overturn, parallel, patsy, pigeon, pith, plaything, postulate, principle, prize sap, pushover, quarry, quid, quiddity, quintessence, rarefy, rattle, reduce, ruin, sabotage, sap the foundations, saphead, sawney, schlemiel, scoop, scoop out, scrabble, scrape, scratch, semiliquid, shake, shake up, shovel, sink, sitting duck, slit trench, soften up, soul, spade, spirit, spiritualize, stooge, stuff, substance, subtilize, subvert, sucker, sum and substance, the nitty-gritty, throw down, throw over, toy, trench, trough, trusting soul, tunnel, unbrace, undermine, unman, unnerve, unstrengthen, unstring, upend, upset, victim, water, weaken, whey, wreck
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