noun smoth·er \ˈsmə-thər\

Definition of SMOTHER

a :  thick stifling smoke or smudge
b :  a state of being stifled or suppressed
:  a dense cloud (as of fog or dust)
:  a confused multitude of things :  welter
smoth·ery \ˈsmə-thə-rē, ˈsməth-rē\ adjective

Origin of SMOTHER

Middle English, alteration of smorther, from smoren to smother, from Old English smorian to suffocate; akin to Middle Dutch smoren to suffocate
First Known Use: 13th century

Rhymes with SMOTHER



: to kill (someone) by covering the face so that breathing is not possible

: to cover (something) in order to keep it from growing or spreading

: to try to keep (something) from happening : to try to stop doing (something)

smoth·eredsmoth·er·ing \ˈsmə-thə-riŋ, ˈsməth-riŋ\

Full Definition of SMOTHER

intransitive verb
:  to be overcome or killed through or as if through lack of air
transitive verb
:  to overcome or kill with smoke or fumes
a :  to kill by depriving of air
b :  to overcome or discomfit through or as if through lack of air
c :  to suppress (a fire) by excluding oxygen
a :  to cause to smolder
b :  to suppress expression or knowledge of <smothered his rage>
c :  to stop or prevent the growth or activity of <smother a child with too much care>; also :  overwhelm
d :  to cover thickly :  blanket <snow smothered the trails>
e :  to overcome or vanquish quickly or decisively
:  to cook in a covered pan or pot with little liquid over low heat

Examples of SMOTHER

  1. He tried to smother her with a pillow.
  2. She smothered the fire with a blanket.

First Known Use of SMOTHER

circa 1520

Rhymes with SMOTHER

SMOTHERY Defined for Kids


verb smoth·er \ˈsmə-thər\

Definition of SMOTHER for Kids

:  to kill or injure by keeping from getting air or by exposing to smoke or fumes :  suffocate
:  to become suffocated
:  to keep from growing or developing by or as if by covering <smother a fire> <… anguish smothered her smallest joy. — Pam Muñoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising>
:  to keep from happening :  suppress <I tried to smother a yawn.>
:  to cover thickly <The salad was smothered with dressing.>


Next Word in the Dictionary: smotherablePrevious Word in the Dictionary: smoteAll Words Near: smother
July 06, 2015
categorical Hear it
absolute or relating to a category
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