Dictionary

1swell

verb \ˈswel\

: to become larger than normal

: to make (something, such as a river) larger or more full than normal

: to increase in size or number

swelledswelled or swol·len \ˈswō-lən\ swell·ing

Full Definition of SWELL

intransitive verb
1
a :  to expand (as in size, volume, or numbers) gradually beyond a normal or original limit <the population swelled>
b :  to become distended or puffed up <her ankle is badly swollen>
c :  to form a bulge or rounded elevation
2
a :  to become filled with pride and arrogance
b :  to behave or speak in a pompous, blustering, or self-important manner
c :  to play the swell
3
:  to become distended with emotion
transitive verb
1
:  to affect with a powerful or expansive emotion
2
:  to increase the size, number, or intensity of <swell the applicant pool>

Examples of SWELL

  1. Her broken ankle swelled badly.
  2. Heavy rains swelled the river.
  3. The population has swelled in recent years.
  4. The economy is swelling at an annual rate of five percent.
  5. Immigrants have swelled the population.

Origin of SWELL

Middle English, from Old English swellan; akin to Old High German swellan to swell
First Known Use: before 12th century

Synonym Discussion of SWELL

expand, amplify, swell, distend, inflate, dilate mean to increase in size or volume. expand may apply regardless of the manner of increase (as growth, unfolding, addition of parts) <a business that expands every year>. amplify implies the extension or enlargement of something inadequate <amplify the statement with details>. swell implies gradual expansion beyond a thing's original or normal limits <the bureaucracy swelled to unmanageable proportions>. distend implies outward extension caused by pressure from within <a distended abdomen>. inflate implies expanding by introduction of air or something insubstantial and suggests a vulnerability to sudden collapse <an inflated ego>. dilate applies especially to expansion of circumference <dilated pupils>.

2swell

noun

: an upward and downward movement of the water in the sea

: the curved or rounded shape of something

: an increase in size or number

Full Definition of SWELL

1
:  a long often massive and crestless wave or succession of waves often continuing beyond or after its cause (as a gale)
2
a :  the condition of being protuberant
b :  a rounded elevation
3
a :  the act or process of swelling
b (1) :  a gradual increase and decrease of the loudness of a musical sound; also :  a sign indicating a swell
(2) :  a device used in an organ for governing loudness
4
a archaic :  an impressive, pompous, or fashionable air or display
b :  a person dressed in the height of fashion
c :  a person of high social position or outstanding competence

Examples of SWELL

  1. The storm has brought high winds and heavy swells along the coast.
  2. the swell of a pregnant woman's belly
  3. a swell in the population
  4. the swell of the music

First Known Use of SWELL

1606

3swell

adjective

: very good

Full Definition of SWELL

1
a :  stylish
b :  socially prominent
2
:  excellent —used as a generalized term of enthusiasm

Examples of SWELL

  1. That was a swell party.
  2. <what a swell time we had at the country club dance>

First Known Use of SWELL

1785

Related to SWELL

Synonyms
A-OK, A1, awesome, bang-up, banner, beautiful, blue-chip, blue-ribbon, boffo, bonny (also bonnie) [chiefly British], boss [slang], brag, brave, bully, bumper, capital, choice, classic, cool [slang], corking, crackerjack, cracking, dandy, divine, dope [slang], down [slang], dynamite, fab, fabulous, famous, fantabulous [slang], fantastic, fine, first-class, first-rate, first-string, five-star, four-star, frontline, gangbusters (also gangbuster), gilt-edged (or gilt-edge), gone [slang], grand, great, groovy, heavenly, high-class, hot, hype [slang], immense, jim-dandy, keen, lovely, marvelous (or marvellous), mean, neat, nifty, noble, number one (also No. 1), numero uno, out-of-sight [slang], par excellence, peachy, peachy keen, phat [slang], prime, primo [slang], prize, prizewinning, quality, radical [slang], righteous [slang], sensational, slick, splendid, stellar, sterling, superb, superior, superlative, supernal, excellent, terrific, tip-top, top, top-flight, top-notch, top-of-the-line, topping [chiefly British], top-shelf, unsurpassed, wizard [chiefly British], wonderful
Antonyms
atrocious, awful, execrable, lousy, pathetic, poor, rotten, terrible, vile, wretched
SWELLED Defined for Kids

1swell

verb \ˈswel\
swelledswelled or swol·len \ˈswō-lən\swell·ing

Definition of SWELL for Kids

1
:  to enlarge in an abnormal way usually by pressure from within or by growth <Her sprained ankle is swelling up.>
2
:  to grow or make bigger (as in size or value) <The town's population swelled.>
3
:  to stretch upward or outward :  bulge <The sails swelled in the breeze.>
4
:  to fill or become filled with emotion <His heart swelled with pride.>

2swell

noun

Definition of SWELL for Kids

1
:  a gradual increase in size, value, or volume <a swell of laughter>
2
:  a long rolling wave or series of waves in the open sea
3
:  the condition of bulging <the swell of big muscles>
4
:  a rounded elevation

3swell

adjective

Definition of SWELL for Kids

:  excellent, first-rate <We had a swell time.>
Medical Dictionary

swell

intransitive verb \ˈswel\
swelledswelled or swol·len \ˈswō-lən\ swell·ing

Medical Definition of SWELL

:  to become distended or puffed up <her ankle swelled>

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2 ENTRIES FOUND:
Next Word in the Dictionary: swellbellyPrevious Word in the Dictionary: SwekomanAll Words Near: swell
July 07, 2015
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