Meaning of SPONGE in English
/ spʌndʒ; NAmE / noun , verb
[ C ] a piece of artificial or natural material that is soft and light and full of holes and can hold water easily, used for washing or cleaning :
( figurative )
His mind was like a sponge, ready to absorb anything.
[ U ] artificial sponge used for filling furniture, cushions , etc.
[ C ] a simple sea creature with a light body full of holes, from which natural sponge is obtained
[ C , U ] ( BrE ) = sponge cake :
a chocolate sponge
[ vn ] sponge sb / yourself / sth (down) to wash sb/yourself/sth with a wet cloth or sponge
SYN wipe :
She sponged his hot face.
Take your jacket off and I'll sponge it down with water.
[ vn + adv. / prep. ] to remove sth using a wet cloth or sponge
SYN wash :
We tried to sponge the blood off my shirt.
[ v ] sponge (off / on sb) ( informal , disapproving ) to get money, food, etc. regularly from other people without doing anything for them or offering to pay
SYN scrounge :
He spent his life sponging off his relatives.
Old English (in sense 1 of the noun), via Latin from Greek spongia , later form of spongos , reinforced in Middle English by Old French esponge .
Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary. Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне. 2005