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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
a sponge cake (=one made from flour, butter, sugar, and eggs)
▪ It's best to eat sponge cakes on the day you make them.
a sponge/toilet bag (=for carrying your soap, toothpaste, shampoo etc)
▪ I left my sponge bag in the hotel bathroom.
sponge bag
sponge cake
sponge pudding
▪ Numerous sponge bags hung on pegs, some with rubber ducks poking out!
▪ When that final whistle went I just wanted to throw up in the sponge bag.
▪ She took her sponge bag into the bathroom, expecting something primitive, and paused, surprised yet again.
▪ It's like being zipped into a sponge bag - yuck.
▪ He had a quick look in Dale's sponge bag.
▪ Foodstuff varies from fried egg and chips to sausage rolls and sponge cakes.
▪ Brush the glaze while still hot over a fruit cake, but allow to cool slightly before spreading over a sponge cake.
▪ It was rising like a sponge cake.
▪ Both are light sponge cakes with jam and vanilla filling, decorated with soft fondant icing.
▪ Desmond's wife brought them tea and a sponge cake that was still warm.
▪ Card magic cake Buy some regular sponge cake from a local store.
▪ They lay within the cracked rocks like the jam in a crazy sponge cake.
▪ Use the following techniques for lining tins for quick and madeira sponge cakes, and for fruit cakes.
▪ O'Lone had memories of meat pies and new potatoes, followed by sponge pudding.
▪ She threw the sponge at the taps in disgust, and registered the peal of the doorbell at the same time.
▪ When that final whistle went I just wanted to throw up in the sponge bag.
▪ What a cop-out it would be to throw in the sponge now.
▪ It has thrown in the sponge ... The flood shines like Occam's razor.
▪ You can use undergravel, or sponge filtration.
▪ Continue to add water until it begins to run over the edge. Use a sponge to clean up the excess water.
throw in the sponge/towel
▪ A good 4-5 season sleeping bag is a must for anyone who doesn't throw in the towel the minute October dawns.
▪ But utility developers shouldn't throw in the towel just yet.
▪ By midnight, its masters had thrown in the towel, and put out the computer's original forecast.
▪ If they start to see prices run up, they might throw in the towel.
▪ It finally threw in the towel when the Prudential, the last remaining bidder, pulled out earlier this month.
▪ Some local manufacturers have simply thrown in the towel.
▪ You want to run because you never want to throw in the towel.
▪ As promised, I will not explain my change within the Fluval 2, using a Polyfilter to replace the sponge.
▪ I felt like a sponge full of unshed tears.
▪ She picked up a sponge and began cleaning the edges of the sink.
▪ They leave reality to the grunts, who face bullets from AK-47s, not flying sponges.
▪ Use a sponge to clean up the excess water.
▪ Later, I helped her sponge off the caked blood.
▪ When I opened my eyes, Polly was sponging my face and neck.
▪ Even the sounds here were dry and brittle; she longed for sounds that were sponged up by green moss.
▪ It happened that some flakes of fire had entered the muzzle of one of the guns after it was sponged.
▪ Jazzbeaux stepped under the shower, and sponged her wounds.
▪ These areas can also be sponged with warm water if necessary.
▪ They did it together, soaping, sponging, laughing with the warm sudsy water sensuous against them.
▪ Victoria's mucky bib came off her flower-sprigged Viyella dress and the chocolate pudding was sponged from her face.
▪ Wearily, she sponged her torso and stomach, cleaning her wounds.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Sponge \Sponge\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Sponged (sp[u^]njd); p. pr. & vb. n. Sponging (sp[u^]n"j[i^]ng).]

  1. To cleanse or wipe with a sponge; as, to sponge a slate or a cannon; to wet with a sponge; as, to sponge cloth.

  2. To wipe out with a sponge, as letters or writing; to efface; to destroy all trace of.

  3. Fig.: To deprive of something by imposition. ``How came such multitudes of our nation . . . to be sponged of their plate and their money?''

  4. Fig.: To get by imposition or mean arts without cost; as, to sponge a breakfast.


Sponge \Sponge\, v. i.

  1. To suck in, or imbibe, as a sponge.

  2. Fig.: To gain by mean arts, by intrusion, or hanging on; as, an idler sponges on his neighbor.
    --E. Eggleston.

    The fly is an intruder, and a common smell-feast, that sponges upon other people's trenchers.

  3. To be converted, as dough, into a light, spongy mass by the agency of yeast, or leaven.


Sponge \Sponge\ (sp[u^]nj), n. [OF. esponge, F. ['e]ponge, L. spongia, Gr. spoggia`, spo`ggos. Cf. Fungus, Spunk.]

  1. (Zo["o]l.) Any one of numerous species of Spongi[ae], or Porifera. See Illust. and Note under Spongi[ae].

  2. The elastic fibrous skeleton of many species of horny Spongi[ae] (Keratosa), used for many purposes, especially the varieties of the genus Spongia. The most valuable sponges are found in the Mediterranean and the Red Sea, and on the coasts of Florida and the West Indies.

  3. Fig.: One who lives upon others; a pertinacious and indolent dependent; a parasite; a sponger.

  4. Any spongelike substance. Specifically:

    1. Dough before it is kneaded and formed into loaves, and after it is converted into a light, spongy mass by the agency of the yeast or leaven.

    2. Iron from the puddling furnace, in a pasty condition.

    3. Iron ore, in masses, reduced but not melted or worked.

  5. (Gun.) A mop for cleaning the bore of a cannon after a discharge. It consists of a cylinder of wood, covered with sheepskin with the wool on, or cloth with a heavy looped nap, and having a handle, or staff.

  6. (Far.) The extremity, or point, of a horseshoe, answering to the heel.

    Bath sponge, any one of several varieties of coarse commercial sponges, especially Spongia equina.

    Cup sponge, a toilet sponge growing in a cup-shaped form.

    Glass sponge. See Glass-sponge, in the Vocabulary.

    Glove sponge, a variety of commercial sponge ( Spongia officinalis, variety tubulifera), having very fine fibers, native of Florida, and the West Indies.

    Grass sponge, any one of several varieties of coarse commercial sponges having the surface irregularly tufted, as Spongia graminea, and S. equina, variety cerebriformis, of Florida and the West Indies.

    Horse sponge, a coarse commercial sponge, especially Spongia equina.

    Platinum sponge. (Chem.) See under Platinum.

    Pyrotechnical sponge, a substance made of mushrooms or fungi, which are boiled in water, dried, and beaten, then put in a strong lye prepared with saltpeter, and again dried in an oven. This makes the black match, or tinder, brought from Germany.

    Sheep's-wool sponge, a fine and durable commercial sponge ( Spongia equina, variety gossypina) found in Florida and the West Indies. The surface is covered with larger and smaller tufts, having the oscula between them.

    Sponge cake, a kind of sweet cake which is light and spongy.

    Sponge lead, or Spongy lead (Chem.), metallic lead brought to a spongy form by reduction of lead salts, or by compressing finely divided lead; -- used in secondary batteries and otherwise.

    Sponge tree (Bot.), a tropical leguminous tree ( Acacia Farnesiana), with deliciously fragrant flowers, which are used in perfumery.

    Toilet sponge, a very fine and superior variety of Mediterranean sponge ( Spongia officinalis, variety Mediterranea); -- called also Turkish sponge.

    To set a sponge (Cookery), to leaven a small mass of flour, to be used in leavening a larger quantity.

    To throw up the sponge, to give up a contest; to acknowledge defeat; -- from a custom of the prize ring, the person employed to sponge a pugilist between rounds throwing his sponge in the air in token of defeat; -- now, throw in the towel is more common, and has the same origin and meaning. [Cant or Slang] ``He was too brave a man to throw up the sponge to fate.''

    Vegetable sponge. (Bot.) See Loof.

    Velvet sponge, a fine, soft commercial sponge ( Spongia equina, variety meandriniformis) found in Florida and the West Indies.

    Vitreous sponge. See Glass-sponge.

    Yellow sponge, a common and valuable commercial sponge ( Spongia agaricina, variety corlosia) found in Florida and the West Indies.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English sponge, spunge, from Latin spongia "a sponge," also "sea animal from which a sponge comes," from Greek spongia, related to spongos "sponge," of unknown origin. "Probably a loanword from a non-IE language, borrowed independently into Greek, Latin and Armenian in a form *sphong-" [de Vaan]. The Latin word is the source of Old Saxon spunsia, Middle Dutch spongie, Old French esponge, Spanish esponja, Italian spugna.\n

\nIn English in reference to the marine animal from 1530s. To throw in the sponge "quit, submit" (1860) is from prizefighting, in reference to the sponges used to cleanse the faces of combatants between rounds (compare later throw in the towel). Sponge-cake is attested from 1808.


late 14c., "to soak up with a sponge," also (transitive) "to cleanse or wipe with a sponge," from sponge (n.). The slang sense of "to live in a parasitic manner, live at the expense of others" is attested from 1670s; sponger (n.) in this sense is from 1670s. Originally it was the victim who was the sponge (c.1600), because he or she was being "squeezed." Intransitive sense "dive for sponges" is from 1881. Related: Sponged; sponging.


n. 1 (context countable English) Any of various marine invertebrates, mostly of the phylum ''Porifera'', that have a porous skeleton often of silic

  1. 2 (context countable English) A piece of porous material used for washing (originally made from the invertebrates, now often made of plastic). v

  2. 1 (context intransitive slang English) To take advantage of the kindness of others. 2 (context transitive English) To get by imposition; to scrounge.

  1. v. wipe with a sponge, so as to clean or moisten

  2. ask for and get free; be a parasite [syn: mooch, bum, cadge, grub]

  3. erase with a sponge; as of words on a blackboard

  4. soak up with a sponge

  5. gather sponges, in the ocean

  1. n. a porous mass of interlacing fibers the forms the internal skeleton of various marine animals and usable to absorb water or any porous rubber or cellulose product similarly used

  2. someone able to acquire new knowledge and skills rapidly and easily; "she soaks up foreign languages like a sponge" [syn: quick study]

  3. a follower who hangs around a host (without benefit to the host) in hope of gain or advantage [syn: leech, parasite, sponger]

  4. primitive multicellular marine animal whose porous body is supported by a fibrous skeletal framework; usually occurs in sessile colonies [syn: poriferan, parazoan]

Sponge (band)

Sponge is an American alternative rock band from Detroit, Michigan formed in 1991 by Vinnie Dombroski, Mike Cross, Tim Cross, and Joey Mazzola. All were formerly of the hard rock band Loudhouse. Sponge was signed to Sony Records in 1994 but have since switched to other labels.


Sponges are animals of the phylumPorifera (; meaning "pore bearer"). They are multicellular organisms that have bodies full of pores and channels allowing water to circulate through them, consisting of jelly-like mesohyl sandwiched between two thin layers of cells. Sponges have unspecialized cells that can transform into other types and that often migrate between the main cell layers and the mesohyl in the process. Sponges do not have nervous, digestive or circulatory systems. Instead, most rely on maintaining a constant water flow through their bodies to obtain food and oxygen and to remove wastes.

Sponge (disambiguation)

Sponge is an animal of the phylum Porifera.

Sponge may also refer to:

Sponge (TV series)

Sponge is a South Korean TV variety show that debuted on 8 November 2003 on KBS2. The show claims to be "infotainment," and revolves around presenting various pieces of trivia in an entertaining fashion. The pieces of trivia are often sent in by viewers who wish to broadcast some piece of little known information they have. Sponge ended in November 2007 because of low TV ratings and continued as Sponge 2.0 in a new format.

Sponge (material)

A sponge is a tool or cleaning aid consisting of soft, porous material. Sponges are usually used for cleaning impervious surfaces. They are especially good at absorbing water and water-based solutions.

Sponges are commonly made from cellulose wood fibers or foamed plastic polymers. Some natural sponges are still sold, but most are now used either as body or facial sponges (bath sponges) or as tools for sponge painting. Bath sponges help cleanse the skin by scraping away the dead skin and washing away dirt.

The three other categories of widely available synthetic sponges are low-density polyether (known as the rainbow packs of non-absorbent sponges), PVA (a highly absorbent material), and polyester.

Polyester sponges are subdivided into a variety of types, some of which are reticulated (artificially broken-in) for ease of use. One type, double-blown polyester, has high water-retention ability approaching or equaling that of PVA sponges, but with visible pores and more diverse uses.

SPONGE (activist group)

SPONGE, an acronym for Society for the Prevention of Niggers Getting Everything, was a prominent political pressure group founded in New York City in or around 1965. While the group at its peak never numbered more than about one hundred members, SPONGE received a massive amount of media coverage, due to the group's attention-getting name, wild antics, and the leadership style of its founder and first President, the twenty-four-year-old James "Sandy" McMenemon.

The group consisted mostly of young Italian American males that hailed from predominantly ethnic neighborhoods of East New York, Bensonhurst, and Bay Ridge in Brooklyn. When queried about the irony of a group of Italian males being led by an Irish-American, one SPONGE member simply explained "[b]ecause Irish, Polish, and Jewish guys are on our [the Italian] side, that's why."

The most notorious moment of this "Society for the Prevention of Niggers Getting Everything" came in 1965, when its members engaged in a pitched battle in the streets of Manhattan against a mob made up of members of "CORE" (the Congress of Racial Equality).

The name came again into the news in 1978, when a number of students from Brighton High School in Boston, Massachusetts, listed themselves as members of SPONGE in their senior yearbooks. When the meaning of the acronym was uncovered, the students were disciplined, and the whole run of the yearbooks recalled and reprinted without the reference. It was also alleged in 1998 that the Riverside Police Department in California had a clandestine group by this name.

Usage examples of "sponge".

Then it was on the radiates, echinoderms, acalephes, polypes, entozoons, sponges, and infusoria, that he had for such a long time burned the midnight oil?

I soaked it up like a sponge, listening eagerly to the advice of adoptive parents, their grown children, clinical psychologists, advocates, social workers, and adoption resource professionals.

Mr Adams on the other hand was all agasp and aswim, obliged to be sponged in a hammock under the weatherawnings, and Mrs Homer lost her looks entirely, going yellow and thin.

Mr Puffett, who all this time had remained discreetly withdrawn and was, at the moment, assisting Crutchley to sponge the aspidistra leaves, looked up, and joined in the melody with a powerful roar.

I gave the boat a cleansing with baler and sponge, redded her up after a fashion, and finally moored her off with a shore-line, some twenty yards out on the placid water.

In this the bather stands and applies the water with a sponge from a basin or bowl on a stand placed conveniently near.

He no longer sat motionless behind his desk: like a dancing bear he hopped about between bookcase and blackboard, seized the sponge and effaced the just outlined itineraries of the Goths.

Captain removes the old breeching from, and places and secures the bight of the new one in the jaws of the cascabel, after the gun is sponged.

Polyps, sponges, and cystic entozoa, may also be included among hermaphrodites.

As Zella and I prepped the patient, they went through the Detainment Area, and came back with a small garment-repair kit, a thermal braising tool, and a pile of personal hygiene sponges.

He dropped to his knees and inventoried the canvas bag, which contained everything an astute documentarian ought to have: the Betacam, the Ampex deck, the Nicad battery pack, two extra cassettes, a cardioid mike with sponge wind guard, steno notebook, pens.

Just before they left the paint department she darted back and bought two huge cans of white emulsion, and chose a sponge.

Moving slowly, feeling his muscles unknot, Keefer stripped out of his jumpsuit, turned up the space heater, and sponged off with an everdamp pad.

They were circular disks, two kilometres in diameter when they matured, made from polyp that was foamed like a sponge for buoyancy.

He ate a bowl of triticale mush and chewed up a mineral-rich handful of iodized sponge.