damp·en | \ ˈdam-pən \
dampened; dampening\ˈdamp-niŋ, 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 \-nər \ noun

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

The fact that all eight of the scheduled opening performers qualify as cult acts with relatively small followings may have served to dampen advance ticket sales. George Varga, sandiegouniontribune.com, "91X cancels X-Fest 2018, which was to have been headlined by Beck and Death Cab for Cutie," 12 July 2018 Outside San Francisco’s 49 square miles of unreality, economies like those of Europe have a social safety net to dampen the hardships for the lower classes. Antonio García Martínez, WIRED, "How Silicon Valley Fuels an Informal Caste System," 9 July 2018 In addition to reflecting deep mutual distrust, the exchange also served to dampen what many see as President Trump’s overwhelmingly optimistic assessment in the aftermath of his historic summit with Kim on June 12 in Singapore. Tracy Wilkinson, latimes.com, "Pompeo pushes back on North Korea complaints, insists nuclear talks are on track," 8 July 2018 Oregon State baseball drubs San Diego again, 19-6 CORVALLIS -- Playing its fifth game in as many days did nothing to dampen No. 2 Oregon State's enthusiasm for video-game numbers. Danny Moran, OregonLive.com, "Oregon State Beavers, Texas Tech Red Raiders agree to football series in 2025, 2026," 17 May 2018 Therefore, the body reasons that a good way to dampen metabolic rate even further is to get rid of as much muscle mass as possible. Bryant Stamford, The Courier-Journal, "Crash diets might be good for right now, but will punish you long term," 10 May 2018 This appears to be an effort to dampen outrage over Zuckerberg giving himself special powers on the platform that are not available to ordinary users. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Hours after Zuck deletion scandal, Facebook announces new unsend feature," 6 Apr. 2018 Indianapolis Star The Indiana Pacers' long, underwhelming free agency history didn't dampen fans hopes of a busy summer. Matthew Glenesk, Indianapolis Star, "In rare twist, Indiana Pacers are NBA free agency winners for once," 9 July 2018 Rain was expected in parts of Colorado, which could dampen fires but trigger flash flooding in areas left bare by wildfires. Colleen Slevin, Fox News, "Fires menace US West, tornado touches Colorado wildfire site," 6 July 2018

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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Phrases Related to dampen

put a dampener on

Statistics for dampen

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dampen

The first known use of dampen was in 1547

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More Definitions for dampen



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 \
dampened; dampening

Kids Definition of dampen

1 : to make or become slighty 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

Comments on dampen

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

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