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

Definition of deepen

transitive verb

: to make deep or deeper

intransitive verb

: to become deeper or more profound

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web Ever-present splits among governments will deepen as rich and poor countries bicker over the EU’s seven-year budget, which must be agreed on in 2020. The Economist, "The new European Commission is approved," 28 Nov. 2019 The American sense of identification with the Israelites only deepened from the Pilgrims’ time. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "This Pilgrim Republic," 28 Nov. 2019 The move deepened the already stark divisions between his supporters in predominantly indigenous rural areas and his mainly metropolitan critics. Max De Haldevang, Quartz, "The world’s as divided about Bolivia’s alleged coup as Bolivians themselves," 15 Nov. 2019 The mystery deepened when Messenger’s readings revealed that a dark, tar-like organic substance surrounded many of the ice deposits. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "Small Yet Mighty Mercury Still Holds Many Mysteries," 9 Nov. 2019 Indigenous groups condemn the deal with the IMF, saying austerity measures will deepen economic inequality. Gonzalo Solano, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Ecuador’s protesters march; some clashes break out in Quito," 9 Oct. 2019 And the connection between Dumas Wesley and City Hope only deepened as the months passed. Michael Dumas, al, "Event seeks to fund lasting change for families in need," 9 Oct. 2019 But ignoring our legal responsibilities toward refugees will only deepen human suffering and heighten global displacement. Angelina Jolie, Time, "Angelina Jolie: Climate Change Is Already Displacing Millions of People. It's Our Responsibility to Help Them," 12 Sep. 2019 Your concept of intimacy will deepen later in April. Randon Rosenbohm, Allure, "What April’s Libra Horoscope Means for You," 31 Mar. 2019

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

1598, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for deepen

Time Traveler

The first known use of deepen was in 1598

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Statistics for deepen

Last Updated

2 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Deepen.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 11 December 2019.

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More Definitions for deepen


How to pronounce deepen (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of deepen

: to become or to cause (something) to become deep or deeper
: to become or to cause (something, such as a feeling or emotion) to become stronger or more powerful
: to make (your knowledge, understanding, etc.) fuller or more complete


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

Kids Definition of deepen

: to make or become deep or deeper I deepened the hole.

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More from Merriam-Webster on deepen

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deepen

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with deepen

Spanish Central: Translation of deepen

Nglish: Translation of deepen for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deepen for Arabic Speakers

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heavy with or as if with moisture

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