dry up

dried up; drying up; dries up

Definition of dry up

transitive verb

: to cut off the supply of

intransitive verb

1 : to disappear as if by evaporation, draining, or cutting off of a source of supply
2 : to wither or die through gradual loss of vitality
3 : to stop talking

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Synonyms & Antonyms for dry up


belt up [British], clam up, dummy up, hush, pipe down, quiet (down), shut up


speak, talk

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Examples of dry up in a Sentence

sick of her constant complaining, he angrily told her to dry up

Recent Examples on the Web

Then the spigot all but dried up. Senator Elizabeth A. Crowley and Representative Agostinho F. Silva, Central Falls Democrats who led the 2012 commission, found the prison was burdened with debt and mismanagement. BostonGlobe.com, "CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. — An activist group on Thursday urged the state to quickly ban private prisons, after the," 14 Sep. 2019 Growth pulled back that year as fuel prices plummeted and oil-patch investment dried up, leading to less drilling and less equipment buying. Jeanna Smialek, New York Times, "Recession or Slowdown? Why You Should Care About the Difference," 13 Sep. 2019 Businesses shut down, faucets dried up and air-conditioning failed in high rises needing the water for their cooling towers. Larry Barszewski, sun-sentinel.com, "Fort Lauderdale water treatment plant could fail in major storm, cutting off water to hundreds of thousands of customers," 13 Sep. 2019 His other shops’ existing customers still have been coming in, but new customers looking to switch to vaping, from smoking, have dried up. Lisa Schencker, chicagotribune.com, "If flavors are banned, vape shop owners warn they’d have to close — and e-cig users would go back to regular cigarettes," 13 Sep. 2019 The water has been accumulating over many years, but its extraction has dried up the soil and caused it to compact -- leading to the sinking. Leah Asmelash, CNN, "Indonesia's capital city isn't the only one sinking," 27 Aug. 2019 As the planet warms, weather patterns change, and lakes and rivers dry up as desertification takes hold. Matt Simon, WIRED, "New IPCC Report Shows How Our Abuse of Land Drives Climate Change," 8 Aug. 2019 Fotis Dulos, the head of Fore Group, a luxury home builder, has faced financial troubles in recent years as financial support dried up from his father-in-law and a decline in the market for high-end homes in Connecticut. Nicholas Rondinone, courant.com, "Jennifer Farber Dulos has been missing for two months. Here’s what we know, and what we don’t, about the search for the mother of five.," 24 July 2019 The water is elusive; the marsh fills with winter rains and dries up in the heat of summer. 1. Charles Fleming, latimes.com, "L.A. Walks: The path to a vibrant marsh in Torrance’s industrial core," 14 June 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Dictionary Entries near dry up

dry suit


Dry Tortugas

dry up

dry valve


dry wash

Statistics for dry up

Last Updated

3 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dry up

The first known use of dry up was in the 14th century

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More from Merriam-Webster on dry up

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dry up

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dry up

Britannica English: Translation of dry up for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dry up

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


fear of the number 13

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