\ˈdrau̇t \
variants: or less commonly drouth \ˈdrau̇th \

Definition of drought 

1 : a period of dryness especially when prolonged specifically : one that causes extensive damage to crops or prevents their successful growth resistant to drought

2 : a prolonged or chronic shortage or lack of something expected or desired a drought of creativity

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Other Words from drought

droughtiness \ˈdrau̇-tē-nəs \ noun
droughty \ˈdrau̇-tē \ adjective

Examples of drought in a Sentence

The drought caused serious damage to crops. a period of drought that lasted several years

Recent Examples on the Web

As Lake Mead inches closer to a shortage, officials have stressed the importance of a drought contingency plan. Joshua Bowling, azcentral, "As the Arizona drought persists, Phoenix's water use continues to drop," 12 July 2018 Meaning that at any given time half the league’s fans will be moaning about a championship drought. Gary Peterson, sacbee, "Breaking the NBA? On the contrary, the Warriors are doing it a favor," 12 July 2018 No American man has won a Grand Slam title since Andy Roddick won the 2003 United States Open, a drought spanning 58 major tournaments. Ben Rothenberg, New York Times, "At 33, John Isner Finds New Heights in the Wimbledon Semifinals," 11 July 2018 Fires exploded in Northern California, Utah and other areas, where a prolonged and severe drought has desiccated forests. CBS News, "More than 60 large wildfires burning across U.S.," 6 July 2018 Fires exploded in Northern California and in the Southwestern U.S., where a prolonged and severe drought has desiccated forests. Washington Post, "Colorado wildfire destroys 3 homes as flames menace US West," 5 July 2018 That Pham, their MVP of a year ago, ended a zero-for-31 drought Sunday, and is hitting .245 with a .741 OPS compared to .306 with a .931 OPS of a year ago. Bob Nightengale, USA TODAY, "Heat is on the Cardinals - and manager Mike Matheny feels it the most," 4 July 2018 In 2011, then-Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad accused Western countries of causing a drought in Iran. Jewish Journal, "Drought-stricken Iran accuses Israel of stealing clouds, snow," 3 July 2018 After a 2012 drought forced Southern ranchers to cull herds, the U.S. beef cattle herd has bounced back, rising by about 12% over the past four years to the highest level in nearly a decade. Jacob Bunge, WSJ, "Chicken, Turkey and Tuna Have a Beef With Your Burger," 30 June 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for drought

Middle English, from Old English drūgath, from drūgian to dry up; akin to Old English drȳge dry — more at dry

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Dictionary Entries near drought





drought spot



Statistics for drought

Last Updated

12 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for drought

The first known use of drought was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for drought



English Language Learners Definition of drought

: a long period of time during which there is very little or no rain


\ˈdrau̇t \

Kids Definition of drought

: a long period of time during which there is very little or no rain

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Comments on drought

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


to reject or criticize sharply

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