\ ˈdepth How to pronounce depth (audio) \
plural depths\ ˈdepths How to pronounce depth (audio) , ˈdep(t)s How to pronounce depth (audio) \

Definition of depth

1a(1) : a deep place in a body of water fish living at great depths
(2) : a part that is far from the outside or surface the depths of the woods
b(1) : a profound or intense state (as of thought or feeling) the depths of sorrow also : a reprehensibly low condition hadn't realized that standards had fallen to such depths
(2) : the middle of a time (such as a season) the depths of winter
(3) : the worst part the depths of the depression
2 mathematics
a : the perpendicular (see perpendicular entry 1 sense 1b) measurement downward from a surface the depth of a swimming pool
b : the direct linear measurement from front to back the depth of a bookshelf
3 : the quality of being deep the depth of the pass
4 : the degree of intensity depth of a color also : the quality of being profound (as in insight) or full (as of knowledge) the depth of her experience
5 : the quality or state of being complete or thorough used in the phrase in depth a study will be made in deptha subject being discussed in depth [=thoroughly, comprehensively] — compare in-depth
6 US, sports : the quality of having many good players a team that lacks depth in the outfield
beyond one's depth or out of one's depth
: beyond the limits of one's capabilities an actor who is out of his depth in serious drama

Other Words from depth

depthless \ ˈdepth-​ləs How to pronounce depth (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for depth


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of depth in a Sentence

These fish typically live at depths of 500 feet or more. Students will test the temperature of the water at different depths. The boat sank to a depth of several hundred feet. measuring the depth of the water the depth of a hole The pool has a depth of 12 feet. I began working at the factory during the depth of the Depression. See More
Recent Examples on the Web The blade should easily penetrate the soil to a depth of 6 inches. Joe Lindsey, Popular Mechanics, 5 May 2022 To showcase the depth of the data, Roku provided Variety with a look at how an Academy Award nomination or victory can influence audiences. Chris Morris, Variety, 4 May 2022 Once upon a time that was me, not understanding or even believing the depth of the mental health crisis digging into our country. Gregg Doyel, The Indianapolis Star, 4 May 2022 Get her a bouquet of her favorite flowers and include a note from some of culture's greats who honored the depth and grace of motherhood. Leah Hall, Country Living, 4 May 2022 The aircraft and the remains of the sailors were recovered from the bottom of the Pacific Ocean in October from a depth of about one mile. Andrew Dyer, San Diego Union-Tribune, 4 May 2022 It had, by common consensus, been summarily dispatched at Anfield last week, its limitations exposed by the depth of Liverpool’s resources and the scope of its firepower and the sheer gravity of Jürgen Klopp’s team. New York Times, 3 May 2022 The holiday provides an opportunity for all Americans to center Black culture and the Black experience for a day in recognition of the depth and complexity of African American history and its implications for us all. Diego Wyatt, Good Housekeeping, 3 May 2022 Poles knew the depth of this year’s draft class matched up with massive holes across his roster. Dan Wiederer, Chicago Tribune, 1 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'depth.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of depth

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for depth

Middle English, from dep deep

Learn More About depth

Time Traveler for depth

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near depth

Deptford pink


depth charge

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for depth

Last Updated

10 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Depth.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for depth


\ ˈdepth How to pronounce depth (audio) \

Kids Definition of depth

1 : measurement from top to bottom or from front to back a cupboard's depth
2 : a place far below a surface or far inside something (as a sea or a forest) Some unusual fish live at great depths.
3 : the middle of time the depth of winter
4 : intensity sense 2 a depth of color No one can imagine the … depth of our emotion …— E. B. White, The Trumpet of the Swan
5 : abundance, completeness The speaker displayed a depth of knowledge.


\ ˈdepth How to pronounce depth (audio) \
plural depths\ ˈdepth How to pronounce depth (audio) , ˈdep(t)s How to pronounce depth (audio) \

Medical Definition of depth

1 : the distance between upper and lower or between dorsal and ventral points of a body
2 : the quality of a state of consciousness, a bodily state, or a physiological function of being intense or complete the depth of anesthesia the depth of respiration

More from Merriam-Webster on depth

Nglish: Translation of depth for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of depth for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about depth


Test Your Vocabulary

Which Word Does Not Belong?

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!