asleep

adjective
\ ə-ˈslēp How to pronounce asleep (audio) \

Definition of asleep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : being in a state of sleep
2 : dead
3 : lacking sensation : numb
b : not alert : indifferent

asleep

adverb

Definition of asleep (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : into a state of sleep
2 : into the sleep of death
3 : into a state of inactivity, sluggishness, or indifference

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for asleep

Synonyms: Adjective

dormant, dozing, napping, resting, sleeping, slumbering

Antonyms: Adjective

awake, sleepless, wakeful, wide-awake

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of asleep in a Sentence

Adjective

“Are you asleep?” “No, I'm awake.” He tries to clean up the house while the kids are asleep. The cats are asleep on the floor. She was still asleep at noon.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

And then there are some steps that the non-snorer can take, too, like going to bed earlier (if possible) to hopefully be asleep by the time the snoring starts. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "How to Share a Bed (And Still Sleep Through the Night)," 3 May 2019 Most of Ecuador, including Moreno himself, was asleep. Joshua Goodman, The Seattle Times, "After 7 long years, Assange’s capture happened quickly," 16 Apr. 2019 Instead, get out of the bed after 15 minutes of trying to fall asleep, and do a boring activity in another room, like folding laundry. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "15 Ways to Sleep Better Tonight, According to Experts," 2 May 2019 Our bodies know when to fall asleep and when to wake up. Brianna Abbott, WSJ, "Unlocking Secrets of Memory and Time in the Brain," 13 Mar. 2019 Crowley appears positively asleep at the wheel, waking up only when the New York Times excoriates him, to awkwardly bop at a Queens Pride Parade and talk almost exclusively about Trump. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Knock Down the House Reminds Us that AOC's Triumph Almost Wasn't," 3 May 2019 During this time, Walken was in his stateroom, apparently asleep. Eleanor Hildebrandt, Popular Mechanics, "The True Story of the Lost Sci-Fi Movie "Brainstorm," Natalie Wood’s Last Film," 21 Dec. 2018 The person appears unconscious or asleep and the woman is gentle in her touch. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "What the New Opening Credits for Outlander Teach Us About Season 4," 2 Nov. 2018 Halfway through dessert, Kim’s two mentor lawyers, Jessica Jackson (with a half-asleep baby draped over her shoulder) and Erin Haney, show up. Jonathan Van Meter, Vogue, "The Awakening of Kim Kardashian West," 10 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

The episode aired on May 24 in the U.K., and saw Turner also reveal that her secret skill is being able to fall asleep, regardless of her location. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sophie Turner Channels the '80s in a Low-Cut Isabel Marant Leather Top," 25 May 2019 In one group, expectant parents attended education sessions on strategies to help babies fall asleep on their own. Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "Babies’ Sleep Linked to Lower Obesity Risks Years Later," 15 Oct. 2018 The study is clearly limited by its very small size, and there is the issue that those subjected to sleep deprivation tended to fall asleep much faster, and thus spent less time lying awake. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "How you end up sleep-deprived matters," 23 May 2018 The basis for her fears was shown in greater depth when Edwards began to fall asleep at the wheel while driving himself and then-girlfriend Mackenzie Standifer to their wedding. Alexia Fernandez, PEOPLE.com, "Pregnancies, Arrests and Heartbreak: A Guide to All the Teen Mom Stars You Should Know," 4 Apr. 2018 So if the driver did fall asleep at the wheel the car should have started slowing down on its own within a few minutes. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "It took seven miles to pull over a Tesla with a seemingly asleep driver," 1 Dec. 2018 Try not to fall asleep before your in-room yoga session. Marissa Miller, Teen Vogue, "13 Dream Vacations to Add to Your Bucket List," 24 Oct. 2018 Read more stories about self-care: Now, find out seven tips for falling asleep faster: Follow Allure on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our newsletter for daily beauty stories delivered right to your inbox. Michelle Lee, Allure, "CEO and Author Jaclyn Johnson on Why Self-Care Is the Key to Success," 21 Aug. 2018 My bedtime ranged from 11:20 P.M. to 2:30 A.M. (oops) and my nightly time asleep ranged from 5 hours and 35 minutes to 10 hours and 26 minutes. Nina Bahadur, SELF, "I Practiced Perfect Sleep Hygiene for a Week and Here's What Happened," 8 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of asleep

Adjective

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adverb

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for asleep

Adjective

Middle English aslepe, from Old English on slæpe

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about asleep

Statistics for asleep

Last Updated

6 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for asleep

The first known use of asleep was in the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for asleep

asleep

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of asleep

: in a state of sleep : sleeping
: lacking any feeling

asleep

adjective
\ ə-ˈslēp How to pronounce asleep (audio) \

Kids Definition of asleep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : being in a state of sleep
2 : having no feeling My foot is asleep.

asleep

adverb

Kids Definition of asleep (Entry 2 of 2)

: into a state of sleep I fell asleep during the movie.

asleep

adjective
\ ə-ˈslēp How to pronounce asleep (audio) \

Medical Definition of asleep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : being in a state of sleep
2 : lacking sensation : numb

asleep

adverb

Medical Definition of asleep (Entry 2 of 2)

: into a state of sleep

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on asleep

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with asleep

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for asleep

Spanish Central: Translation of asleep

Nglish: Translation of asleep for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of asleep for Arabic Speakers

Comments on asleep

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

WORD OF THE DAY

showing great care, attention, and effort

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!