\ ˈdepth \
plural depths\ˈdepths, ˈdep(t)s \

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

(3) : abyss sense 1

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 a study will be made 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

Keep scrolling for more

Other words from depth

depthless \ˈdepth-ləs \ adjective

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

From the opening cover, which in Florida features Florida running back Jordan Scarlett, FSU running back Cam Akers and Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa, Athlon provides its readers with an in-depth preview of the 2018 season. Matt Murschel,, "A guide to top college football preview magazines," 13 July 2018 For more great storytelling and in-depth analysis, subscribe to the magazine—and get up to 94% off the cover price. Tom Verducci,, "The Star That Still Won't Shine: The Incredible, Unprecedented but Unseen Greatness of Mike Trout," 12 July 2018 The guidance on school violence is a follow-up to one published in 2002 in conjunction with an in-depth study of school attacks and perpetrators. Del Quentin Wilber, WSJ, "Secret Service Issues Guide Aimed at Preventing School Shootings," 12 July 2018 Here's my in-depth post today fully explaining the Heat's salary cap predicament, when and how Miami can bid for top free agents again, and what the Heat is trying to do about this quandary. Barry Jackson, miamiherald, "Heat signs a sharp-shooter who has impressed everyone this summer," 10 July 2018 The temblor occurred at 8:56 p.m. Pacific time at a depth of 14.9 miles. Quakebot,, "Magnitude 6.0 quake strikes off Jalisco coast of Mexico," 30 June 2018 The Reference Shelf Bloomberg Markets has an in-depth report on Deutsche Bank under a former CEO. Steven Arons,, "Why Deutsche Bank Can’t Just Shake Off Its Problems," 24 June 2018 In this workshop, Paula Humber, MBA, SHRM-SCP, P&L Corporate Solutions, human resources consultant, provides an in-depth look at what business owners need to know in light of this increase in I-9 audits and investigations. Palm Beach SCORE. Cindy Kent,, "The Planner: Celebrate Caribbean-American Business Success June 28," 22 June 2018 The mine is near the border with the Czech Republic, and is preparing a new corridor for extraction works at a depth of 900 metres. Jordan Blum, Houston Chronicle, "Major methane study complicates plans of oil and gas industry," 21 June 2018

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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about depth

Statistics for depth

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for depth

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for depth


\ ˈdepth \

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 \
plural depths\ˈdepth, ˈdep(t)s \

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

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on depth

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for depth

Spanish Central: Translation of depth

Nglish: Translation of depth for Spanish Speakers

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

Comments on depth

What made you want to look up depth? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


an open space surrounded by woods

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Food Quiz

True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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