ar·​id | \ ˈa-rəd How to pronounce arid (audio) , ˈer-əd \

Definition of arid

1 : excessively dry specifically : having insufficient rainfall to support agriculture an arid region
2 : lacking in interest and life : jejune arid textbooks

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Other Words from arid

aridity \ ə-​ˈri-​də-​tē How to pronounce aridity (audio) , a-​ \ noun
aridness \ ˈa-​rəd-​nəs How to pronounce aridness (audio) , ˈer-​əd-​ \ noun

Examples of arid in a Sentence

a dull and arid textbook an arid speech about duty and responsibility
Recent Examples on the Web The Sahel, a semi-arid strip south of the Sahara desert spanning 4,000 miles (6,400km), is unusually troubled. The Economist, "Mapping conflict in west Africa Fighting in the Sahel has forced 1.7m people from their homes," 20 June 2020 Each waterway is a long, linear oasis in an arid landscape. T. Edward Nickens, Field & Stream, "A D.I.Y. Duck Hunt on Public Land in New Mexico," 10 Mar. 2020 The land around Makhmur is rocky, hilly and arid, with numerous natural caves that the Islamic State has exploited as hide-outs and for storing weapons. New York Times, "U.S. Military Reviewing Iraq Operations After 2 Troops Die Fighting ISIS," 9 Mar. 2020 The arid landscape of the American West could be Iraq; the settler-colonization of the former and the contemporary wars of the latter belong, these striking images imply, to one common history of violence. Eli Jelly-schapiro, The New York Review of Books, "The Art of Neverending Wars," 15 Feb. 2020 Researchers say that genes have typically been shared during cold and arid periods, as recently as 14,000 years ago, when African grasslands expanded. Fox News, "Rhino saved? Southern white rhino gives birth aided by artificial insemination," 1 Aug. 2019 While its 25 million people dwell on a continent that’s 50 percent larger than Europe, an arid and dry climate makes most of the land uninhabitable. Jason Scott, Bloomberg.com, "The Secret to Australia Avoiding Recession: Mass Immigration," 12 Mar. 2018 This salt is not for use in arid and semiarid regions, where soils are high in sodium. Beth Hanson, Good Housekeeping, "Grow Healthier Crops Using These Natural Nitrogen Sources," 24 Aug. 2015 Located in a far-flung corner of West Texas, just 30 minutes from Carlsbad Caverns, the park is a magical respite from the arid tract of the Chihuahuan Desert to the south. Emily Pennington, Outside Online, "Add Guadalupe Mountains to Your Must-Visit List," 1 May 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'arid.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of arid

1652, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for arid

French or Latin; French aride, from Latin aridus, from arēre to be dry; akin to Sanskrit āsa ash, Old English asce

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Last Updated

29 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Arid.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/arid. Accessed 14 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for arid

How to pronounce arid (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of arid

: very dry : having very little rain or water
: lacking in interest and life
ar·​id | \ ˈer-əd How to pronounce arid (audio) \

Kids Definition of arid

: not having enough rainfall to support agriculture

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More from Merriam-Webster on arid

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for arid

Spanish Central: Translation of arid

Nglish: Translation of arid for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of arid for Arabic Speakers

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