deep·​en ˈdē-pən How to pronounce deepen (audio)
deepened; deepening ˈdē-pə-niŋ How to pronounce deepen (audio)

transitive verb

: to make deep or deeper

intransitive verb

: to become deeper or more profound

Examples of deepen in a Sentence

They deepened the river so that larger boats could sail through. Age had deepened the lines in his face. The water deepens toward the center of the river. Her powerful words deepened our commitment to the cause. The vacation together deepened their relationship with each other. The mystery was deepened by her silence. This class will deepen your understanding of economics. Living in the country's capital had deepened her knowledge of politics. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Thursday’s report from special counsel Robert Hur deepened Biden’s political problem by painting a more damaging official picture of the president than had been seen before. Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times, 10 Feb. 2024 The restrictions deepened a crisis between Israel and UNRWA, whose operations have been threatened after Israeli accusations that some of its workers participated in the Oct. 7 attack that triggered Israel's war in Gaza. Julia Frankel The Associated Press,, 10 Feb. 2024 The schism deepened last fall, when General Zaluzhny published an essay declaring the fighting a deadlock, contradicting Mr. Zelensky’s continual, hopeful assertions of progress. Marc Santora, New York Times, 8 Feb. 2024 Her fascination with clothing only deepened over the years, particularly after she was exposed to the creative genius of designers such as John Galliano at Dior and Tom Ford at Gucci, as well as the mesmerizing photography of Steven Meisel. Alex Kessler, Vogue, 8 Feb. 2024 Upon completing Chloe’s, Cloud’s relationship level deepened with Aerith’s. George Yang, PCMAG, 7 Feb. 2024 His job was to assess and then shape, deepen, and organize. John Byron Kuhner, National Review, 3 Feb. 2024 Their friendship deepened when Bonet let Kravitz sleep on her couch. Stephanie Kaloi, Peoplemag, 2 Feb. 2024 Markham understands the desire to broaden and sometimes deepen the conversations at big family gatherings. Edward M. Eveld, Kansas City Star, 1 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'deepen.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of deepen was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near deepen

Cite this Entry

“Deepen.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


deep·​en ˈdē-pən How to pronounce deepen (audio)
deepened; deepening ˈdēp-(ə-)niŋ How to pronounce deepen (audio)
: to make or become deep or deeper

More from Merriam-Webster on deepen

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