\ ˈdwel How to pronounce dwell (audio) \
dwelled\ ˈdweld How to pronounce dwelled (audio) , ˈdwelt \ or dwelt\ ˈdwelt How to pronounce dwelt (audio) \; dwelling

Definition of dwell

intransitive verb

1 : to remain for a time dwell in the hallway
2a : to live as a resident the town in which he dwelled for eight years the dwelling place of the gods
b : exist, lie where the heart of the matter dwells
3a : to keep the attention directed used with on or upon tried not to dwell on my fears
b : to speak or write insistently used with on or upon reporters dwelling on the recent scandal

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Other Words from dwell

dweller \ ˈdwe-​lər How to pronounce dweller (audio) \ noun

Examples of dwell in a Sentence

a cave where bats dwell dwelling with a farm family as an exchange student in France

Recent Examples on the Web

While the Constitution’s first three articles define the federal government’s three branches, Article 4 dwells on the interlocking relationship between federal, state, territorial, and tribal powers. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "Make the Guarantee Clause Great Again," 17 July 2019 Life is unpredictable and doesn’t always go as planned. Surround yourself with people who dance through it rather then dwell on it. Char Adams, PEOPLE.com, "Couple Marries in 'Unbelievable' Wedding During NYC Blackout: They Made 'Lemonade Out of Lemons'," 15 July 2019 Like many other city-dwelling, twentysomething Alaskans, Shawna gets up in the morning and goes to work. Anchorage Daily News, "Living with FASD: ‘I’m going to have this for the rest of my life’," 28 June 2019 Before the trial even began, both parties reached an agreement to treat the genetic genealogy process as a tip, and not dwell on it beyond that. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "Man Found Guilty in a Murder Mystery Cracked By Cousins’ DNA," 28 June 2019 Coloradans like to boast about having higher red blood cell counts than their sea level–dwelling counterparts. Alex Schechter, National Geographic, "Here is the ultimate hot springs road trip in Colorado," 24 June 2019 The debt must go toward buying, building or substantially improving your dwelling to qualify for the interest deduction. Darla Mercado, USA TODAY, "You might get these 4 tax breaks back if Congress reinstates deductions," 20 June 2019 Whatever their purpose in the Neolithic, by the Iron Age, the crannogs became dwelling sites where generations of people lived. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Scotland’s Tiny Artificial Islands Date to the Stone Age," 14 June 2019 Detroit Police spokeswoman Officer Vanessa Burt said police received a call at 5:47 p.m. Monday that led to officers being dispatched to a vacant dwelling on 500 block of Brentwood. Ann Zaniewski, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit police: Woman found dead in vacant home," 11 June 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dwell

Middle English, from Old English dwellan to go astray, hinder; akin to Old High German twellen to tarry

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Dictionary Entries near dwell






dwelling house

dwelling place

Statistics for dwell

Last Updated

20 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dwell

The first known use of dwell was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for dwell



English Language Learners Definition of dwell

literary + formal : to live in a particular place


\ ˈdwel How to pronounce dwell (audio) \
dwelt\ ˈdwelt \ or dwelled\ ˈdweld \; dwelling

Kids Definition of dwell

1 : to live in a place : reside
2 : to keep the attention directed Try not to dwell on your mistakes.

Other Words from dwell

dweller noun cave dwellers

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More from Merriam-Webster on dwell

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dwell

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dwell

Spanish Central: Translation of dwell

Nglish: Translation of dwell for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dwell for Arabic Speakers

Comments on dwell

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


an act or instance of editing or removing

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