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peep 1 (pēp)
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intr.v. peeped, peep·ing, peeps
1. To utter short, soft, high-pitched sounds, like those of a baby bird; cheep.
2. To speak in a hesitant, thin, high-pitched voice.
n.
1. A short, soft, high-pitched sound or utterance, like that of a baby bird.
2. A slight sound or utterance: I don't want to hear a peep out of you.
3. Any of various small North American sandpipers.

[Middle English *pepen, probably alteration of pipen, from Old English pīpian, to pipe, from pīpe, tube, musical instrument, and from Latin pīpāre, to peep; see PIPE.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
peep 2 (pēp)
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v. peeped, peep·ing, peeps
v.intr.
1. To peek furtively; steal a quick glance.
2. To peer through a small aperture or from behind something.
3. To appear as though emerging from a hiding place: the moon peeping through the clouds.
v.tr.
To cause to emerge or become partly visible: He peeped his head through the door.
n.
1. A quick or furtive look or glance.
2. A first glimpse or appearance: the peep of dawn.

[Middle English pepen, perhaps alteration of piken, to peek; see PEEK.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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