damp·​en | \ ˈdam-pən How to pronounce dampen (audio) \
dampened; dampening\ ˈdamp-​niŋ How to pronounce dampening (audio) , ˈdam-​pə-​ \

Definition of dampen

transitive verb

1 : to check or diminish the activity or vigor of : deaden the heat dampened our spirits
2 : to make damp the shower barely dampened the ground

intransitive verb

1 : to become damp
2 : to become deadened or depressed

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Other Words from dampen

dampener \ ˈdamp-​nər How to pronounce dampener (audio) , ˈdam-​pə-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for dampen



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Examples of dampen in a Sentence

Dampen the spot with a wet cloth. The shower barely dampened the ground. We wouldn't let the bad weather dampen our excitement.
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Recent Examples on the Web Trump got in a tiff with North Carolina’s Democratic governor over social distancing restrictions that threatened to dampen his celebration. Washington Post, "Governors who quickly reopened backpedal as virus surges," 26 June 2020 Trump got in a tiff with North Carolina's Democratic governor over social distancing restrictions that threatened to dampen his celebration. Paul J. Weber, Anchorage Daily News, "Governors who tried to quickly reopen economies backpedal as coronavirus surges," 26 June 2020 Hotter, more humid weather probably does dampen the transmission of the virus, at least a bit. Chelsea Harvey, Scientific American, "Summer Weather Won’t Save Us from Coronavirus," 19 June 2020 The Taiwanese authorities made nationwide mask-inventory data available in real time, and volunteer developers immediately published simple apps to dampen fears of scarcity and publicize the location of distribution kiosks. Gideon Lewis-kraus, Wired, "How to Make Government Trustworthy Again," 18 June 2020 Others rely on gas struts that dampen the sound of the door opening. The Editors, Field & Stream, "Three Things to Consider Before Buying a Biometric Safe," 11 June 2020 The goal of policymakers, therefore, is not to dampen inflation, but to stimulate the economy and reduce the slack. Michael Taylor, ExpressNews.com, "The monetary theory revolution will not be televised," 11 June 2020 Those two slight questions marks have done little to dampen the odds that Gonzales will fall in the top handful of picks. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, "MLB draft to liven up your Wednesday night viewing: Here are the top prospects," 11 June 2020 Even Thursday morning's release of new unemployment data, which was worse than economists expected with 1.9 new claims filed, could not dampen the generally optimistic mood that has taken over Wall Street in recent weeks. Lee Clifford, Fortune, "Nasdaq 100 briefly hits record high as stocks close down slightly," 4 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dampen.' 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 dampen

1547, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for dampen

Time Traveler

The first known use of dampen was in 1547

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Statistics for dampen

Last Updated

30 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Dampen.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dampen. Accessed 10 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for dampen


How to pronounce dampen (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of dampen

: to make (something) somewhat or slightly wet : to make (something) damp
: to make (something) less strong or active


damp·​en | \ ˈdam-pən How to pronounce dampen (audio) \
dampened; dampening

Kids Definition of dampen

1 : to make or become slightly wet Please dampen this washcloth.
2 : to make dull or less active A bad start didn't dampen our confidence.

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More from Merriam-Webster on dampen

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dampen

Spanish Central: Translation of dampen

Nglish: Translation of dampen for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dampen for Arabic Speakers

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