Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


He sprang to the rock, and exerted his utmost strength to dislodge it.

I sprang to my feet and took immediate measures to extinguish the flames.

A look of surprise, mingled with consternation, sprang into Grace's eyes.

The devil saw his chance, sprang up, and mastered the father.

Gilder sprang to his feet, his face suddenly grown younger, radiant.

On the instant, he threw off his coat and sprang far out after the drifting body.

He sprang to the octagonal window, even as Dick took possession of the pistol.

He got to his feet with lithe swiftness of movement, and sprang close to the desk.

Of a sudden, he sprang up, and stepped close to the Inspector.

She sprang up to take my hand, her eyes shining with excitement.


Old English springan "to leap, burst forth, fly up" (class III strong verb; past tense sprang, past participle sprungen), from Proto-Germanic *sprenganan (cf. Old Norse, Old Frisian springa, Middle Dutch springhen, Old High German springan, German springen), from PIE *sprengh- "rapid movement" (cf. Sanskrit sprhayati "desires eagerly," Greek sperkhesthai "to hurry").

In Middle English, it took on the role of causal sprenge, from Old English sprengan (as still in to spring a trap, etc.). Slang meaning "to pay" (for a treat, etc.) is recorded from 1906. Meaning "to announce suddenly" (usually with on) is from 1876. Meaning "to release" (from imprisonment) is from 1900.