What does sink mean?

Definitions for sink

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word sink.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. sinknoun

    plumbing fixture consisting of a water basin fixed to a wall or floor and having a drainpipe

  2. sinknoun

    (technology) a process that acts to absorb or remove energy or a substance from a system

    "the ocean is a sink for carbon dioxide"

  3. sinkhole, sink, swallow holenoun

    a depression in the ground communicating with a subterranean passage (especially in limestone) and formed by solution or by collapse of a cavern roof

  4. cesspool, cesspit, sink, sumpverb

    a covered cistern; waste water and sewage flow into it

  5. sink, drop, drop downverb

    fall or descend to a lower place or level

    "He sank to his knees"

  6. sinkverb

    cause to sink

    "The Japanese sank American ships in Pearl Harbor"

  7. sink, pass, lapseverb

    pass into a specified state or condition

    "He sank into nirvana"

  8. sink, settle, go down, go underverb

    go under, "The raft sank and its occupants drowned"

  9. sink, subsideverb

    descend into or as if into some soft substance or place

    "He sank into bed"; "She subsided into the chair"

  10. dip, sinkverb

    appear to move downward

    "The sun dipped below the horizon"; "The setting sun sank below the tree line"

  11. slump, fall off, sinkverb

    fall heavily or suddenly; decline markedly

    "The real estate market fell off"

  12. slump, slide down, sinkverb

    fall or sink heavily

    "He slumped onto the couch"; "My spirits sank"

  13. bury, sinkverb

    embed deeply

    "She sank her fingers into the soft sand"; "He buried his head in her lap"


  1. sinknoun

    A basin used for holding water for washing

  2. sinknoun

    A sinkhole

  3. sinknoun

    A depression in land where water collects, with no visible outlet

  4. sinknoun

    A heat sink

  5. sinknoun

    A place that absorbs resources or energy

  6. sinknoun

    The motion of a sinker pitch

    Jones' has a two-seamer with heavy sink.

  7. sinknoun

    An object or callback that captures events; event sink

  8. sinknoun

    a destination vertex in a transportation network

  9. sinkverb

    To descend or submerge (or to cause to do so) into a liquid or similar substance.

  10. sinkverb

    To cause a vessel to sink, generally by making it no longer watertight.

  11. sinkverb

    To push (something) into something.

  12. sinkverb

    To experience apprehension, disappointment, dread, or momentary depression.

  13. sinkverb

    To pot; hit a ball into a pocket or hole

  14. Etymology: From sincan, from sinkwanan, from sengʷ-.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Sinknoun

    Etymology: sinc , Saxon.

    Should by the cormorant belly be restrain’d,
    Who is the sink o’ the’ body. William Shakespeare, Coriolanus.

    Bad humours gather to a bile, or as divers kennels flow to one sink, so in short time their numbers increased. John Hayward.

    Gather more filth than any sink in town. George Granville.

    Returning home at night, you’ll find the sink
    Strike your offended sense with double stink. Jonathan Swift.

    What sink of monsters, wretches of lost minds,
    Mad after change, and desperate in their states,
    Wearied and gall’d with their necessities,
    Durst have thought it? Ben Jonson, Catiline.

    Our soul, whose country’s heav’n and God her father,
    Into this world, corruption’s sink, is sent;
    Yet so much in her travail she doth gather,
    That she returns home wiser than she went. John Donne.

  2. To Sinkverb

    A small fleet of English made an hostile invasion, or incursion, upon their havens and roads, and fired, sunk, and carried away ten thousand ton of their great shipping, besides smaller vessels. Francis Bacon.

    At Saga in Germany they dig up iron in the fields by sinking ditches two foot deep, and in the space of ten years the ditches are digged again for iron since produced. Boyle.

    Near Geneva are quarries of freestone, that run under the lake: when the water is at lowest, they make within the borders of it a little square, inclosed within four walls: in this square they sink a pit, and dig for freestone. Addison.

    A mighty king I am, an earthly god;
    I raise or sink, imprison or set free;
    And life or death depends on my decree. Matthew Prior.

    Trifling painters or sculptors bestow infinite pains upon the most insignificant parts of a figure, ’till they sink the grandeur of the whole. Alexander Pope, Essay on Homer.

    Heav’n bear witness,
    And if I have a conscience let it sink me,
    Ev’n as the ax falls, if I be not faithful. William Shakespeare.

    These are so far from raising mountains, that they overturn and fling down some before standing, and undermine others, sinking them into the abyss. John Woodward.

    When on the banks of an unlook’d-for stream,
    You sunk the river with repeated draughts,
    Who was the last in all your host that thirsted? Addison.

    That Hector was in certainty of death, and depressed with the conscience of an ill cause: if you will not grant the first of these will sink the spirit of a hero, you’ll at least allow the second may. Alexander Pope.

    They catch at all opportunities of ruining our trade, and sinking the figure which we make. Joseph Addison, on the War.

    I mean not that we should sink our figure out of covetousness, and deny ourselves the proper conveniences of our station, only that we may lay up a superfluous treasure. John Rogers.

    Thy cruel and unnatural lust of power
    Has sunk thy father more than all his years,
    And made him wither in a green old age. Nicholas Rowe.

    To labour for a sunk corrupted state. .

    If sent with ready money to buy any thing, and you happen to be out of pocket, sink the money, and take up the goods on account. Jonathan Swift, Rules to Servants.

  3. To SINKv.n. pret i sunk, anciently sank; part. sunk or su

    Etymology: sencan , Saxon; senken, German.

    Make his chronicle as rich with prize,
    As is the oozy bottom of the sea
    With sunken wreck and sumless treasuries. William Shakespeare, H. V.

    In with the river sunk, and with it rose,
    Satan, involv’d in rising mist; then sought
    Where to lie hid. John Milton, Paradise Lost, b. ix.

    He swims or sinks, or wades, or creeps or flies. John Milton.

    The pirate sinks with his ill-gotten gains,
    And nothing to another’s use remains. Dryden.

    Supposing several in a tempest will rather perish than work, would it not be madness in the rest to chuse to sink together, rather than do more than their share? Joseph Addison, on the War.

    The arrow went out at his heart, and he sunk down in his chariot. 2 Kings ix. 24.

    David took a stone and slang it, and smote the Philistine, that the stone sunk into his forehead. 1 Sa. xvii. 49.

    In vain has nature form’d
    Mountains and oceans to oppose his passage;
    He bounds o’er all, victorious in his march;
    The Alps and Pyreneans sink before him. Joseph Addison, Cato.

    What were his marks? ———— A lean cheek, a blue eye and sunken. William Shakespeare, As you like it.

    Deep dinted wrinkles on her cheeks she draws;
    Sunk are her eyes, and toothless are her jaws. Dryden.

    Our country sinks beneath the yoke;
    It weeps, it bleeds, and each new day a gash
    Is added to her wounds. William Shakespeare, Macbeth.

    They arraign’d shall sink
    Beneath thy sentence. John Milton.

    But if you this ambitious pray’r deny,
    Then let me sink beneath proud Arcite’s arms;
    And, I once dead, let him possess her charms. Dryden.

    Let these sayings sink down into your ears. Lu. ix. 44.

    Truth never sinks into these mens minds, nor gives any tincture to them. John Locke.

    This republick has been much more powerful than it is at present, as it is still likelier to sink than increase in its dominions. Joseph Addison, on Italy.

    Let not the fire sink or slacken, but increase. John Mortimer.

    Would’st thou have me sink away
    In pleasing dreams, and lose myself in love,
    When every moment Cato’s life’s at stake? Joseph Addison, Cato.

    Nor urg’d the labours of my lord in vain,
    A sinking empire longer to sustain. John Dryden, Æn.


  1. Sink

    A sink – also known by other names including sinker, washbowl, hand basin, and wash basin – is a bowl-shaped plumbing fixture used for washing hands, dishwashing, and other purposes. Sinks have taps (faucets) that supply hot and cold water and may include a spray feature to be used for faster rinsing. They also include a drain to remove used water; this drain may itself include a strainer and/or shut-off device and an overflow-prevention device. Sinks may also have an integrated soap dispenser. Many sinks, especially in kitchens, are installed adjacent to or inside a counter. When a sink becomes clogged, a person will often resort to using a chemical drain cleaner or a plunger, though most professional plumbers will remove the clog with a drain auger (often called a "plumber's snake").


  1. sink

    A sink refers to a bowl-shaped fixture, typically installed in kitchens or bathrooms, used for washing hands, dishes, or other purposes. It usually has taps for hot and cold water supply and may include a spray feature for faster rinsing. The term "sink" can also refer to a natural or man-made phenomenon where liquid or small solid particles are carried downwards or absorbed, such as a sinkhole. In ecology, a sink refers to a part of the environment that absorbs or stocks pollutants or substances.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Sinkverb

    to fall by, or as by, the force of gravity; to descend lower and lower; to decline gradually; to subside; as, a stone sinks in water; waves rise and sink; the sun sinks in the west

  2. Sinkverb

    to enter deeply; to fall or retire beneath or below the surface; to penetrate

  3. Sinkverb

    hence, to enter so as to make an abiding impression; to enter completely

  4. Sinkverb

    to be overwhelmed or depressed; to fall slowly, as so the ground, from weakness or from an overburden; to fail in strength; to decline; to decay; to decrease

  5. Sinkverb

    to decrease in volume, as a river; to subside; to become diminished in volume or in apparent height

  6. Sinkverb

    to cause to sink; to put under water; to immerse or submerge in a fluid; as, to sink a ship

  7. Sinkverb

    figuratively: To cause to decline; to depress; to degrade; hence, to ruin irretrievably; to destroy, as by drowping; as, to sink one's reputation

  8. Sinkverb

    to make (a depression) by digging, delving, or cutting, etc.; as, to sink a pit or a well; to sink a die

  9. Sinkverb

    to bring low; to reduce in quantity; to waste

  10. Sinkverb

    to conseal and appropriate

  11. Sinkverb

    to keep out of sight; to suppress; to ignore

  12. Sinkverb

    to reduce or extinguish by payment; as, to sink the national debt

  13. Sinknoun

    a drain to carry off filthy water; a jakes

  14. Sinknoun

    a shallow box or vessel of wood, stone, iron, or other material, connected with a drain, and used for receiving filthy water, etc., as in a kitchen

  15. Sinknoun

    a hole or low place in land or rock, where waters sink and are lost; -- called also sink hole


  1. Sink

    A sink is a bowl-shaped plumbing fixture used for washing hands, for dishwashing or other purposes. Sinks generally have taps that supply hot and cold water and may include a spray feature to be used for faster rinsing. They also include a drain to remove used water; this drain may itself include a strainer and/or shut-off device and an overflow-prevention device. Sinks may also have an integrated soap dispenser. When a sink becomes stopped-up or clogged, a person will often resort to use a chemical drain cleaner or a plunger, though most professional plumbers will attack the clog with a drain auger.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Sink

    singk, v.i. to fall to the bottom: to fall down: to descend lower: to fall gradually: to fall below the surface: to enter deeply: to be impressed: to be overwhelmed: to fail in strength.—v.t. to cause to sink: to put under water: to keep out of sight: to suppress: to degrade: to cause to decline or fall: to plunge into destruction: to make by digging or delving: to pay absolutely: to lower in value or amount: to lessen:—pa.t. sank, sunk; pa.p. sunk, sunk′en.n. a drain to carry off dirty water: a box or vessel connected with a drain for receiving dirty water: an abode of degraded persons: a general receptacle: an area in which a river sinks and disappears: a depression in a stereotype plate: a stage trap-door for shifting scenery: in mining, an excavation less than a shaft.—ns. Sink′er, anything which causes a sinking, esp. a weight fixed to a fishing-line; Sink′-hole, a hole for dirty water to run through; Sink′ing, a subsidence: a depression.—adj. causing to sink.—n. Sink′ing-fund, a fund formed by setting aside income every year to accumulate at interest for the purpose of paying off debt.—adj. Sink′ing-ripe (Shak.), dead-ripe, about to fall off.—n. Sink′room, a scullery. [A.S. sincan; Ger. sinken, Dut. zinken.]

Editors Contribution

  1. sinkverb

    To cause (something) to sink into a liquid such as water; submerge.

    I accidentally sank my biscuit in my milk!

    Submitted by zakaria1409 on July 3, 2022  

Suggested Resources

  1. SINK

    What does SINK stand for? -- Explore the various meanings for the SINK acronym on the Abbreviations.com website.

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. SINK

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Sink is ranked #6331 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Sink surname appeared 5,388 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 2 would have the surname Sink.

    96% or 5,177 total occurrences were White.
    1.5% or 85 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    0.9% or 52 total occurrences were of two or more races.
    0.5% or 30 total occurrences were Asian.
    0.4% or 23 total occurrences were Black.
    0.3% or 21 total occurrences were American Indian or Alaskan Native.

British National Corpus

  1. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'sink' in Written Corpus Frequency: #4123

  2. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'sink' in Nouns Frequency: #2561

  3. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'sink' in Verbs Frequency: #545

How to pronounce sink?

How to say sink in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of sink in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of sink in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of sink in a Sentence

  1. Phil Klotzbach:

    The models are generally forecasting a more conducive pattern for the Atlantic by the time that we get to the middle of August, air is forecast to more consistently rise over Africa and sink over the tropical Pacific. This pattern should result in reduced vertical wind shear.

  2. Eric Johnson:

    It took getting a new police chief in here who believed in the importance of actually having a sort of kitchen sink approach to fighting violent crime and knowing that we needed to have a plan to address violent crime and to really get things moving in the right direction, our chief is committed to making sure that we actually reduce violence by going where violence is and not pretending like we don't know where the parts of our city are.

  3. Quinn Harris/Getty Images:

    I did not think we’d be talking about this after this game. I'm gonna take some time and have conversations with the folks around here, and then take some time away and make a decision -- obviously before free agency or anything kinda gets going on that front, it's fresh right now. It's a little shocking for sure. Definitely was hoping to have a nice week after the NFC Championship to enjoy the lead up [to the Super Bowl] and start contemplating some things, so I haven't even let the moment really sink in yet.

  4. Collin Koh:

    When you target and sink an aircraft carrier it is irreversible.

  5. Jack Ablin:

    We're going to get a number investors can sink their teeth into tomorrow and next week kicks off earnings season which is vitally important to the direction of stocks for the rest of the year.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for sink

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    lighter consisting of a thin piece of wood or cardboard tipped with combustible chemical; ignites with friction
    A bias
    B bash
    C integrity
    D match

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