tr.v. in·ter·spersed, in·ter·spers·ing, in·ter·spers·es
1. To distribute among other things at intervals: interspersed red and blue tiles on the walls; intersperse praise with constructive criticism.
2. To supply or diversify with things distributed at intervals: interspersed lamp fixtures on the large ceiling; a newspaper section that was interspersed with advertisements.
[From Latin interspergere, interspers- : inter-, inter- + spargere, to scatter.]
in′ter·spersed·ly (-spûrsĭd-lē) adv.
in′ter·spersion (-spûrzhən, -shən) n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 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:
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.