dense

adjective
\ ˈden(t)s How to pronounce dense (audio) \
denser; densest

Definition of dense

1a : marked by compactness or crowding together of parts dense vegetation dense traffic
b chemistry : having a high mass (see mass entry 2 sense 1c) per unit volume (see volume entry 1 sense 2) Carbon dioxide is a dense gas. The cake was overly sweet and dense.
2a : slow to understand : stupid, thickheaded was too dense to get the joke
b : extreme dense ignorance
3 mathematics : having between any two elements at least one element The set of rational numbers is dense.
4 : demanding concentration to follow or comprehend dense prose
5 : having high or relatively high opacity (see opacity sense 2) a dense fog a dense photographic negative

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Other Words from dense

densely adverb
denseness \ ˈden(t)-​snəs How to pronounce denseness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for dense

Synonyms

close, compact, crowded, jam-packed, packed, serried, thick, tight

Antonyms

airy, loose, open, uncrowded

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Choose the Right Synonym for dense

stupid, dull, dense, crass, dumb mean lacking in power to absorb ideas or impressions. stupid implies a slow-witted or dazed state of mind that may be either congenital or temporary. stupid students just keeping the seats warm stupid with drink dull suggests a slow or sluggish mind such as results from disease, depression, or shock. monotonous work that leaves the mind dull dense implies a thickheaded imperviousness to ideas. too dense to take a hint crass suggests a grossness of mind precluding discrimination or delicacy. a crass, materialistic people dumb applies to an exasperating obtuseness or lack of comprehension. too dumb to figure out what's going on

dense, thick, and compact mean having parts that are gathered tightly together. dense is used of something in which the parts are very close together. They lost their way in the dense forest. thick is used of something that has many small parts that form a single mass. He has a thick head of hair. compact is used of something that has a close and firm gathering of parts, especially within a small area. The laptop has a compact design.

Examples of dense in a Sentence

They cut a path through the dense jungle. a dense tangle of wires a dense cluster of stars That part of the city has a dense population of immigrants. A dense mass of spectators filled the courtroom. In the movie, she plays his kind but somewhat dense aunt.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Southerly winds swept smoke down to the Kenai Peninsula on Monday, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a dense smoke advisory for the Sterling Highway area from Sterling to Cooper Landing through 1 p.m. on Wednesday. Jeff Parrott, Anchorage Daily News, "Wildfire smoke expected to clear in Anchorage and move back to Kenai Peninsula," 2 July 2019 The Scientist offsets a plethora of salumi with dense, meaty Castelvetrano olives. Dominic Armato, azcentral, "The best restaurants in Scottsdale and Paradise Valley," 1 July 2019 On the edges of town, firefighting crews wield chain saws to trim dense stands of timber that could funnel flames into backyards. Kurtis Alexander, SFChronicle.com, "Fearful of being the next Paradise, Grass Valley confronts its fire vulnerability," 30 June 2019 The pale, underbaked olive rolls go unfinished at our table, and the dense beef-and-pork meatballs are pushed around their plate, a disappointment. Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, "Blend 111 in Vienna may need to call 911," 28 June 2019 Africa’s dense rain forests turned into savannas and deserts. Paul Manger, Quartz Africa, "Elephants evolved larger brains partly thanks to climate change, say scientists," 28 June 2019 This alien world is the only other planetary body around the sun with a dense atmosphere that is rich in nitrogen and carbon like our own. Shannon Stirone, Scientific American, "New NASA Mission Will Fly Titan’s Frigid Skies to Search for Life’s Beginnings," 27 June 2019 Cold, dense oceanic lithosphere sinks below an adjacent, lighter plate, plunging into the hot asthenosphere. National Geographic, "THE PACIFIC’S FIERY RING," 27 June 2019 Titan’s dense air and low gravity will allow the 300-kilogram copter, which will be powered by a radioactive generator, to hover with 38 times less power than needed on Earth. Paul Voosen, Science | AAAS, "NASA will fly a billion-dollar quadcopter to Titan, Saturn’s methane-rich moon," 27 June 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for dense

Latin densus; akin to Greek dasys thick with hair or leaves

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Dictionary Entries near dense

de novo

Denpasar

densate

dense

densen

densifier

densify

Statistics for dense

Last Updated

5 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dense

The first known use of dense was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for dense

dense

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of dense

: having parts that are close together
: crowded with people
informal : not smart : not able to understand things easily

dense

adjective
\ ˈdens How to pronounce dense (audio) \
denser; densest

Kids Definition of dense

1 : having its parts crowded together : thick dense vegetation dense fog
2 : stupid sense 1 I'm not dense enough to believe this story.

Other Words from dense

densely adverb a densely populated region

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More from Merriam-Webster on dense

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dense

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dense

Spanish Central: Translation of dense

Nglish: Translation of dense for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dense for Arabic Speakers

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