1. The act of intercepting or the state of being intercepted: the interception of goods being smuggled.
2. Something, such as a missile, an aircraft, or a radio transmission, that is intercepted.
3. Sports A pass that is intercepted, especially a forward pass in football.
4. The process in which water falling as precipitation is slowed or prevented from reaching the ground by vegetation, as when snow accumulates in the forest canopy.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. 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:
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.