adjective \ˈsha-(ˌ)lō\

: having a small distance to the bottom from the surface or highest point

: not going far inward from the outside or the front edge of something

: not caring about or involving serious or important things

Full Definition of SHALLOW

:  having little depth <shallow water>
:  having little extension inward or backward <office buildings have taken the form of shallow slabs — Lewis Mumford>
a :  penetrating only the easily or quickly perceived <shallow generalizations>
b :  lacking in depth of knowledge, thought, or feeling <a shallow demagogue>
:  displacing comparatively little air :  weak <shallow breathing>
shal·low·ly \-lō-lē, -lə-lē\ adverb
shal·low·ness noun

Examples of SHALLOW

  1. The shallow end of the pool is only three feet deep.
  2. Her boyfriends were all shallow creeps.
  3. She could only take shallow breaths.
  4. His breathing became very shallow.

Origin of SHALLOW

Middle English schalowe; probably akin to Old English sceald shallow — more at skeleton
First Known Use: 14th century



Definition of SHALLOW

transitive verb
:  to make shallow
intransitive verb
:  to become shallow

First Known Use of SHALLOW


Rhymes with SHALLOW



Definition of SHALLOW

:  a shallow place or area in a body of water —usually used in plural but singular or plural in construction

Examples of SHALLOW

  1. <we waded through the shallows looking for tadpoles>

First Known Use of SHALLOW


Related to SHALLOW

Other Geology Terms

anthracite, boulder, cwm, erratic, igneous, intrusive, mesa, sedimentary, silt, swale


adjective \ˈshal-(ˌ)ō, -ə(-w)\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of SHALLOW

: displacing comparatively little air <shallow breathing>


Next Word in the Dictionary: shallowish
Previous Word in the Dictionary: shallot
All Words Near: shallow

Seen & Heard

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