|Origin:||, past participle of penetrare|
to enter something and pass or spread through it, especially when this is difficult [↪ pierce]:
go through[intransitive and transitive]
bullets that penetrate thick armour plating
Sunlight barely penetrated the dirty windows.
Explorers penetrated deep into unknown regions.
to start to sell things to an area or country, or to have an influence there:
Few U.S. companies have successfully penetrated the Japanese electronics market.
to succeed in becoming accepted into a group or an organization, sometimes in order to find out their secrets:
KGB agents had penetrated most of their intelligence services.
to succeed in understanding something:
Science has penetrated the mysteries of nature.
b) [intransitive and transitive]
to be understood, with difficulty:
What could I say that would penetrate his thick skull?
if a man penetrates someone, he puts his penis into a woman's vagina or into someone's anus when having sex
to see into or through something when this is difficult:
My eyes couldn't penetrate the gloom.