\ ˈdau̇(-ə)r How to pronounce dour (audio) , ˈdu̇r How to pronounce dour (audio) \

Definition of dour

1 : stern, harsh a dour expression on her face
2 : obstinate, unyielding an insistent hunger for learning and a dour … determination to achieve it— Walter Moberly
3 : gloomy, sullen a dour disposition

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Other Words from dour

dourly adverb
dourness noun

Examples of dour in a Sentence

She had a dour expression on her face. the dour mood of the crowd
Recent Examples on the Web The dour data prompted Republican lawmakers and lobbying groups, including the US Chamber of Commerce, to call on Washington to rescind its recent unemployment aid., "As Republicans seek to curb unemployment aid, 1.9 million-plus people could see their checks slashed," 13 May 2021 But the mood is dour because the two sides no longer seem to share the same vision of how a final peace deal should take shape. Star Tribune, "Low expectations dog UN bid to relaunch Cyprus peace talks," 27 Apr. 2021 The dour survey weighed on financial markets Tuesday. Patricia Kowsmann, WSJ, "Weak Lending in Europe Hampers Covid-19 Recovery," 20 Apr. 2021 The immediate reaction is to assume that one semifinal will be cautious and dour, and the other crackling with light. New York Times, "The Moral Case for Buying Erling Haaland," 17 Apr. 2021 Consider that another lesson for Okoro, who carried a dour look on his face and even groaned once when asked about his defense following the 119-101 loss. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "Isaac Okoro undaunted after defending gauntlet of NBA stars, including Stephen Curry," 16 Apr. 2021 Pairing Peters' bright-eyed outsider with Winslet's dour local suggests a spiky procedural. Darren Franich,, "Mare of Easttown scrambles intriguing family drama with a drab mystery: Review," 15 Apr. 2021 The sardonic lyrics of the Dead Kennedys made the band stand out amongst their dour punk contemporaries, as well as self-serious political bands influenced by DK like Rage Against the Machine. Kathryn Doyle, Vulture, "This Week in Comedy Podcasts: The Newcomers Tackle Tyler Perry," 18 Mar. 2021 Snyder grabbed the football where Nolan left it and sprinted ahead with an even more dour fictional world in Man of Steel and Batman v Superman. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "The Snyder Cut Is a Better Version of Justice League. But It Sets a Dangerous Precedent," 15 Mar. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dour

Middle English, from Latin durus hard — more at during

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Time Traveler for dour

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

17 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Dour.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for dour



English Language Learners Definition of dour

formal : serious and unfriendly : silent and gloomy


\ ˈdau̇r How to pronounce dour (audio) , ˈdu̇r \

Kids Definition of dour

: looking or being serious and unfriendly a dour old man a dour expression

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dour

Nglish: Translation of dour for Spanish Speakers

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