drowned ˈdrau̇nd How to pronounce drown (audio) ; drowning ˈdrau̇-niŋ How to pronounce drown (audio)

intransitive verb

: to become drowned
fell in the river and drowned
chicken drowning in barbecue sauce
drowning in paperwork

transitive verb

1
a
: to suffocate by submersion especially in water
b
: to submerge especially by a rise in the water level
villages drowned by the flooding river
c
: to soak, drench, or cover with a liquid
drowns her French fries in ketchup
2
: to engage (oneself) deeply and strenuously
drowned himself in work
3
: to cause (a sound) not to be heard by making a loud noise
usually used with out
turned up the radio to drown out the noise
4
a
: to drive out (something, such as a sensation or an idea)
drowned his sorrows in liquor
b
: overwhelm
was drowned in homework

Example Sentences

Four people drowned in the flood. She fell in the river and drowned. She claims that he tried to drown her. He tried to drown himself. The river overflowed, drowning whole villages. The food was drowned in sauce. The loud music drowned the sound of their conversation. See More
Recent Examples on the Web And there's no better way to drown them out than with Bose QuietComfort 45—a PCMag Editors' Choice pick for headphones. PCMAG, 29 Nov. 2022 Thankfully, the games have been good enough to drown him out. Tara Sullivan, BostonGlobe.com, 29 Nov. 2022 One of them, born after the death of a brother, is strong-willed and outspoken; the other, rescued by her adoptive father after her biological parents left her to drown, is shy and reserved. The New Yorker, 21 Oct. 2021 There is Execution Rocks Lighthouse, named for the legend of colonial prisoners who during the Revolutionary War were taken there, chained to the rocks and left to drown with the rising tide. Jordan Salama, Scientific American, 12 Oct. 2021 Bond didn’t want to ship managers off to an external retreat, pull them away from their work for a week, or drown them in learning that wouldn’t stick long-term. Kevin Kruse, Forbes, 4 Oct. 2022 Frank Ocean represented boys like me who grew up on Luther’s voice and the chatter that threatened to drown it out. Mychal Denzel Smith, Harper's BAZAAR, 8 July 2022 Goldberg went after her and allegedly tried to drown her. Fox News, 29 Apr. 2022 And yet, what threatens to drown them in the end are not the questions, but the unbending refusal to engage with doubt at all. Angie Han, The Hollywood Reporter, 25 Apr. 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Middle English drounen

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of drown was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near drown

Cite this Entry

“Drown.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/drown. Accessed 8 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

drown

verb
1
a
: to suffocate in a liquid and especially in water
b
: to become drowned
2
: to cover with water : inundate
3
: to overpower especially with noise
usually used with out
the music was drowned out by shouting

Medical Definition

drown

verb
drowned ˈdrau̇nd How to pronounce drown (audio) ; drowning ˈdrau̇-niŋ How to pronounce drown (audio)

intransitive verb

1
: to suffocate in water or some other liquid
2
: to suffocate because of excess of body fluid that interferes with the passage of oxygen from the lungs to the body tissues (as in pulmonary edema)

transitive verb

: to suffocate by submersion especially in water
drowned three kittens

More from Merriam-Webster on drown

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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