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adjective, \ˈden(t)s\

Simple Definition of dense

  • : having parts that are close together

  • : crowded with people

  • : not smart : not able to understand things easily

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of dense


  1. 1 a :  marked by compactness or crowding together of parts <dense vegetation> <dense traffic> b :  having a high mass per unit volume <carbon dioxide is a dense gas>

  2. 2 a :  slow to understand :  stupid, thickheaded <was too dense to get the joke> b :  extreme <dense ignorance>

  3. 3 :  having between any two elements at least one element <the set of rational numbers is dense>

  4. 4 :  demanding concentration to follow or comprehend <dense prose>

  5. 5 :  having high or relatively high opacity <a dense fog> <a dense photographic negative>

densely adverb
denseness play \ˈden(t)-snəs\ noun

Examples of dense in a sentence

  1. They cut a path through the dense jungle.

  2. a dense tangle of wires

  3. a dense cluster of stars

  4. That part of the city has a dense population of immigrants.

  5. A dense mass of spectators filled the courtroom.

  6. In the movie, she plays his kind but somewhat dense aunt.

Origin of dense

Latin densus; akin to Greek dasys thick with hair or leaves

First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of dense

stupid, dull, dense, crass, dumb mean lacking in power to absorb ideas or impressions. stupid implies a slow-witted or dazed state of mind that may be either congenital or temporary <stupid students just keeping the seats warm> <stupid with drink>. dull suggests a slow or sluggish mind such as results from disease, depression, or shock <monotonous work that leaves the mind dull>. dense implies a thickheaded imperviousness to ideas <too dense to take a hint>. crass suggests a grossness of mind precluding discrimination or delicacy <a crass, materialistic people>. dumb applies to an exasperating obtuseness or lack of comprehension <too dumb to figure out what's going on>.

Rhymes with dense

DENSE Defined for Kids


adjective \ˈdens\

Definition of dense for Students


  1. 1 :  having its parts crowded together :  thick <dense vegetation> <dense fog>

  2. 2 :  stupid 1 <I'm not dense enough to believe this story.>

densely adverb <a densely populated region>

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up dense? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to dishevel or rumple

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