\ ˈdent How to pronounce dent (audio) \
dented; denting; dents

Definition of dent

 (Entry 1 of 6)

transitive verb

1 : to make a dent in dent a car
2 : to have a weakening effect on

intransitive verb

: to form a dent by sinking inward : become dented


noun (1)

Definition of dent (Entry 2 of 6)

1 : a depression or hollow made by a blow or by pressure
2 : an appreciable impression or effect often made against resistance hasn't made a dent in the problem specifically : a weakening or lessening effect costs that have made a dent in the budget


noun (2)

Definition of dent (Entry 3 of 6)

Definition of dent (Entry 4 of 6)

variants: or denti- or dento-

Definition of dent- (Entry 5 of 6)

: tooth : teeth dentiform


biographical name
\ ˈdent How to pronounce Dent (audio) \

Definition of Dent (Entry 6 of 6)

Joseph Mal*a*by \ ˈma-​lə-​bē How to pronounce Dent (audio) \ 1849–1926 English publisher

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Examples of dent in a Sentence

Verb I'm afraid I dented the wall pretty badly when I was hammering in that nail. Many of the cans were badly dented. Some types of metal dent more easily than others. The team's confidence has been dented by a recent series of losses.
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First Known Use of dent


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun (1)

1565, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1703, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dent


Middle English, short for indenten to make dents in, indent

Noun (2)

French, literally, tooth, from Latin dent-, dens

Combining form

Middle English denti-, from Latin, from dent-, dens tooth — more at tooth

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Learn More About dent

Time Traveler for dent

Time Traveler

The first known use of dent was in the 14th century

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Statistics for dent

Cite this Entry

“Dent.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for dent



English Language Learners Definition of dent

: to make a dent in (something)
: to decrease (something) : to make (something) weaker


\ ˈdent How to pronounce dent (audio) \
dented; denting

Kids Definition of dent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make a hollow mark in or on I dented my car.
2 : to become damaged by a hollow mark



Kids Definition of dent (Entry 2 of 2)

: a notch or hollow mark made in a surface by a blow or by pressure

Medical Definition of dent

More from Merriam-Webster on dent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dent

Nglish: Translation of dent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dent for Arabic Speakers


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