dry

adjective
\ ˈdrī How to pronounce dry (audio) \
drier also dryer\ ˈdrī(-​ə)r How to pronounce dryer (audio) \; driest also dryest\ ˈdrī-​əst How to pronounce dryest (audio) \

Definition of dry

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : free or relatively free from a liquid and especially water Mix the dry indgredients first. as dry as a bone
b : not being in or under water happy to be on dry land
c meteorology : lacking precipitation or humidity a dry climate
2a : characterized by exhaustion of a supply of liquid a dry well
b geology : devoid of running water a dry ravine
c : devoid of natural moisture My throat was dry. dry leaves
d : no longer sticky or damp The paint isn't dry yet.
e : not giving milk a dry cow
f : lacking freshness : stale
g chemistry : anhydrous
3a : marked by the absence or scantiness of secretions a dry cough
b : not shedding or accompanied by tears a dry sob
4 obsolete : involving no bloodshed or drowning I would fain die a dry death— William Shakespeare
5a : marked by the absence of alcoholic beverages a dry party
b : prohibiting the manufacture or distribution of alcoholic beverages a dry county
6 : served or eaten without butter or margarine dry toast

7 alcohol

a : lacking sweetness : sec dry champagne
b : having all or most sugar fermented to alcohol a dry wine dry beer
8a : solid as opposed to liquid dry groceries
b : reduced to powder or flakes : dehydrated dry milk
9 : functioning without lubrication a dry clutch
10 of natural gas : containing no recoverable hydrocarbon (such as gasoline)
11 : requiring no liquid in preparation or operation a dry photocopying process
12a : not showing or communicating warmth, enthusiasm, or tender feeling : severe a dry style of painting
b : wearisome, uninteresting dry passages of description a dry lecturer
c : lacking embellishment : plain
13a : not yielding what is expected or desired : unproductive a writer going through a dry spell
b : having no personal bias or emotional concern the dry light of reason
14 : marked by matter-of-fact, ironic, or terse manner of expression a dry wit has a very dry sense of humor
15 : lacking smooth sound qualities a dry rasping voice
16 : being a dry run a dry rehearsal

dry

verb
dried; drying

Definition of dry (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make dry (see dry entry 1) drying her hair

intransitive verb

: to become dry waiting for the paint to dry

dry

noun
plural drys

Definition of dry (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : the condition of being dry (see dry entry 1) : dryness
2 : something dry especially : a dry place

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Other Words from dry

Adjective

dryish \ ˈdrī-​ish How to pronounce dryish (audio) \ adjective
dryly or less commonly drily adverb
dryness noun

Verb

dryable \ ˈdrī-​ə-​bəl How to pronounce dryable (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for dry

Synonyms: Adjective

arid, droughty, sere (also sear), thirsty, waterless

Synonyms: Verb

dehydrate, desiccate, parch, scorch, sear

Antonyms: Adjective

damp, dank, humid, moist, wet

Antonyms: Verb

hydrate, wash, water, wet

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Examples of dry in a Sentence

Adjective

Mix the dry ingredients first, then add the milk and eggs. the dry heat of the desert We tried to stay dry in the rain by standing under a tree. The stream is bone dry. Are the clothes dry yet? The paint should be dry in a few hours. a stretch of dry weather a country with a very dry climate This plant does well in dry conditions. The chicken was dry and tasteless.

Verb

I'll wash the dishes if you dry them. Make sure you dry your hands. He dried himself with the towel. Stop crying and dry your eyes. I'll wash and you dry, okay? Your shirt is drying on the clothesline.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

People who have dry or sensitive skin should (as always) look for hydrating formulas without ingredients known to be irritating, such as fragrances. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "How to Pick the Best Sunscreen for Your Lovely Face," 10 May 2019 Remove from marinade, pat dry and season with salt and pepper. The Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen, Good Housekeeping, "Grilled Tequila Steak Tacos," 6 May 2019 Add pasta and toss to coat, adding some reserved pasta water if pasta seems dry. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Mint and Walnut Pesto Lasagna Noodles," 29 Apr. 2019 While Social Security reserves are still projected to run dry in 2034, actuaries have extended the doomsday clock for the disability fund by 20 years to 2052. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The Falling Disability Rolls," 28 Apr. 2019 Carefully rinse the vinegar off of the eggs and pat dry before continuing. 2. Country Living, "How to Make Shaving Cream Easter Eggs for Your Most Colorful Holiday Yet," 15 Mar. 2019 Spread an even layer of glaze on éclair tops and let stand until dry to the touch, about 15 minutes. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Coconut Cream Éclairs," 7 Mar. 2019 Lawless recommends using a quick-dry temporary touch-up spray that won't leave any sticky residue, such as L'Oréal Paris Magic Root Cover Up, to effectively conceal grays in seconds. Redbook, "How to Look Like You Just Left the Salon," 27 Nov. 2018 Shoulder season is the ideal time to visit South Africa, when the weather remains reasonably dry but visitor numbers have thinned considerably. Mark Ellwood, Condé Nast Traveler, "Best Places to Visit in September," 25 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Now, a cute mini Wet Brush lives in my purse, an original Wet Brush stays on my armoire, and the Wet Brush Flex Dry stays on my bathroom sink for insanely easy blow drying in half the time — seriously. Mackenzie Dunn, Good Housekeeping, "This $8 Wet Brush Rescued My Hair from Tangles," 11 Apr. 2019 Most of the styles were kept side-swept with an easy, air-dryed quality. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Mary Katrantzou Makes the Case for Spunky Clip-In Streaks," 17 Feb. 2019 Manchin has also tried to keep his powder dry for the past two weeks. Dylan Scott, Vox, "The Senate bloc that could decide Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation," 3 Oct. 2018 Nothing spreads germs like poor handwashing, and the handwashing sink lacked paper towels or any hand drying device. David J. Neal, miamiherald, "Rodent poop in a fruit bowl, near soup, on shelves. These restaurants are in deep ...," 7 June 2018 Wash them in hottest setting and then dry on hottest cycle. Rachel Bogo, Seventeen, "Here's How To Shrink Jeans for the Perfect Fit," 5 Apr. 2019 The prosthetics team even had someone on hand with a fan to dry the elaborate cosmetics. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Heidi Klum and Her Boyfriend Were Fiona and Shrek for Halloween," 1 Nov. 2018 Wash and dry your beets, place them in a baking dish, and cover them in salt. Audrey Bruno, SELF, "Yes, It Is Possible to Prep and Cook Beets Without Making a Huge Mess—Here's How," 27 Feb. 2019 Wash everything possible in hot water, and dry in a dryer. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, "How to Get Rid of Bedbugs Once and For All," 6 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Be aware that thinsets take longer to dry, so take special care to use spacers for every tile to keep them from settling or shifting before the thinset dries. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "Your Quick and Dirty Guide to Tiling a Kitchen Backsplash," 26 Apr. 2019 Until the air becomes less bone-dry later this weekend. A. Camden Walker, Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Mild to occasionally warm, through early next week," 19 Jan. 2018 And always leave them open to air-dry to prevent a mildewy odor. Audrey Bruno, SELF, "Here's How to Clean All Your Food Storage Containers," 14 Oct. 2018 That means dumping out the old solution, rinsing the case with fresh solution, wiping it down with a clean tissue, then letting it air-dry with the caps off, the AOA says. Korin Miller, SELF, "7 Dangerous Mistakes You’re Making With Your Contact Lens Case," 25 July 2018 Each towel absorbs up to eight times its weight in water and dries in minutes. Emily Reed, Outside Online, "How to Build Your Perfect Car Camping Box," 12 June 2018 Paint each circle with two coats of white acrylic paint, letting dry between coats. 2. Womansday.com Staff, Woman's Day, "7 New Ways to Decorate With Wallpaper," 26 Mar. 2010 Some women will air-dry, others will do a wet set, and still others may want braids or a blowout. Jennifer Goldstein, Marie Claire, "Hair Rules for Everyone," 7 Feb. 2019 At the time officials said the slow unwind would fade into the background—the equivalent of watching paint dry. Nick Timiraos, WSJ, "Fed Officials Weigh Earlier-Than-Expected End to Bond Portfolio Runoff," 25 Jan. 2019

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

Adjective

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

Verb

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dry

Adjective, Verb, and Noun

Middle English, from Old English drȳge; akin to Old High German truckan dry, Old English drēahnian to drain

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Learn More about dry

Dictionary Entries near dry

druv

druxy

Druze

dry

dryad

dryas

dryasdust

Statistics for dry

Last Updated

19 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dry

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

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More Definitions for dry

dry

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of dry

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having no or very little water or liquid
: no longer wet
: having no rain or little rain

dry

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dry (Entry 2 of 2)

: to remove water or moisture from (something or someone) : to make (something or someone) dry
: to make plates, dishes, pots, etc., dry by rubbing them with a towel
: to become dry

dry

adjective
\ ˈdrī How to pronounce dry (audio) \
drier; driest

Kids Definition of dry

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not wet or moist Are the clothes dry?
2 : having little or no rain a dry climate
3 : not being in or under water dry land
4 : having little natural moisture a dry throat
5 : no longer liquid or sticky The paint is dry.
6 : containing no liquid a dry creek
7 : not giving milk a dry cow
8 : not producing desired results a dry spell
9 : not producing a wet substance from the body a dry cough dry sobs
10 : funny but expressed in a serious way He has a dry sense of humor.
11 : uninteresting a dry lecture
12 : not sweet dry wines

Other Words from dry

dryly or drily adverb
dryness noun

dry

verb
dried; drying

Kids Definition of dry (Entry 2 of 2)

: to remove or lose any moisture Help me dry the dishes.

dry

adjective
\ ˈdrī How to pronounce dry (audio) \
drier\ ˈdrī(-​ə)r How to pronounce drier (audio) \; driest\ ˈdrī-​əst How to pronounce driest (audio) \

Medical Definition of dry

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : marked by the absence or scantiness of secretions, effusions, or other forms of moisture
2 of a cough : not accompanied by the raising of mucus or phlegm

dry

verb
dried; drying

Medical Definition of dry (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to make dry

intransitive verb

: to become dry

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More from Merriam-Webster on dry

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dry

Spanish Central: Translation of dry

Nglish: Translation of dry for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dry for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dry

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