empty

adjective
emp·​ty | \ ˈem(p)-tē How to pronounce empty (audio) \
emptier; emptiest

Definition of empty

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : containing nothing empty shelves
b : not occupied or inhabited an empty building
d : not pregnant empty heifer
e : null sense 4a the empty set
2a : lacking reality, substance, meaning, or value : hollow an empty pleasure
b : destitute of effect or force an empty threat
c : devoid of sense : foolish
3 : hungry
4a : idle empty hours
b : having no purpose or result : useless
5 : marked by the absence of human life, activity, or comfort an empty silence

empty

verb
emptied; emptying

Definition of empty (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to make empty : remove the contents of empty a purse
b : deprive, divest a phrase emptied of all meaning
c : to discharge (itself) of contents
d : to fire (a repeating firearm) until empty
2 : to remove from what holds or encloses

intransitive verb

1 : to become empty the theater emptied quickly
2 : to discharge contents the river empties into the ocean

empty

noun
plural empties

Definition of empty (Entry 3 of 3)

: something (such as a bottle or can) that is empty

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Other Words from empty

Adjective

emptily \ ˈem(p)-​tə-​lē How to pronounce emptily (audio) \ adverb
emptiness \ ˈem(p)-​tē-​nəs How to pronounce emptiness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for empty

Synonyms: Adjective

bare, blank, clean, devoid, stark, toom [chiefly Scottish], vacant, vacuous, void

Synonyms: Verb

clear, evacuate, vacate, void

Antonyms: Adjective

full

Antonyms: Verb

fill, load

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Choose the Right Synonym for empty

Adjective

empty, vacant, blank, void, vacuous mean lacking contents which could or should be present. empty suggests a complete absence of contents. an empty bucket vacant suggests an absence of appropriate contents or occupants. a vacant apartment blank stresses the absence of any significant, relieving, or intelligible features on a surface. a blank wall void suggests absolute emptiness as far as the mind or senses can determine. a statement void of meaning vacuous suggests the emptiness of a vacuum and especially the lack of intelligence or significance. a vacuous facial expression

synonyms see in addition vain

Adjective

empty and vacant both mean not having anything inside. empty is used for a thing that has nothing in it at all. He threw away the empty bag. It may also be used instead of vacant. The house sat empty until a new family moved in. vacant is the opposite of occupied and is used of something that is not occupied usually only for a while. That apartment is vacant right now.

Examples of empty in a Sentence

Adjective

The arena was completely empty. She felt trapped in an empty marriage. unhappy people leading empty lives

Verb

She emptied the contents of her purse onto the table. It's your turn to empty the trash.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The ship is coming in empty and will load up on crude oil to bring to the global market. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "America's New Energy Coast," 19 Mar. 2019 In Mulroney’s world, every bare arm and empty earlobe are opportunities. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jessica Mulroney Is the Real Fashion Royalty," 7 Mar. 2019 Not since Bob Guccione’s hot tub was rumored to empty into the sewer system have New York townhouses made the news as much as the three adjacent buildings on East 75th Street purchased by Roman Abramovich. David Netto, Town & Country, "Is Roman Abramovich's Controversial New York City Mansion the Future of Manhattan Real Estate?," 30 Jan. 2019 Despite the map being many times larger than Fallout 4’s, the world of Fallout 76 feels smaller and emptier. Sarah Leboeuf, Ars Technica, "Two weeks in, Fallout 76 is a lonely, glitchy, flawed mess," 28 Nov. 2018 The bot dug under the salty, dry soil of the Atacama, and often came up empty. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "A Rover Finds Life in Mars-Like Barrenness in South America," 28 Feb. 2019 Since then, a dearth of financing for new condominium construction, compounded by legal hurdles in some markets, has shifted developers’ focus to rental buildings popular with empty-nesters looking for convenience and flexibility. Cecilie Rohwedder, WSJ, "The Latest Housing Hotspot: Downtown and by the River," 6 Dec. 2018 TPMs are abundant in PC laptops and in corporate desktops, but they are often omitted from enthusiast systems and motherboards—while lots of boards have a slot for the TPM, it's usually left empty. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Mac mini review—a testament to Apple’s stubbornness," 23 Nov. 2018 The development would target aging empty-nesters who want to sell their homes but stay in the North Shore area. Tom Daykin, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Mandel Group's disputed River Hills luxury apartment proposal returns in downsized form," 6 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Many of the buildings had emptied out by the 1950s, and home-decorating showrooms started moving in. John King, SFChronicle.com, "Well-crafted Jackson Square condos rich in design inspiration," 2 July 2018 An Alabama mayor says the last train car full of New York City sewage sludge that has stunk up her town has finally been emptied and removed. CBS News, "New York City "poop train" finally leaves after stinking up Alabama town, mayor says," 19 Apr. 2018 That means using brown rice instead of buying farro for one recipe, or emptying out your crisper drawer for use-it-up frittata. Alyse Whitney, Bon Appetit, "17 Ways to Save Money on Groceries," 7 Feb. 2018 Start off with a salad dressed in vinaigrette; vinegar has been shown to help delay stomach-emptying, and olive oil is a good fat. Liz Krieger, Harper's BAZAAR, "How To Prevent and Survive a Hangover," 23 Nov. 2016 In North Jersey’s 11th District, it’s Mikie Sherrill, 46, a former U.S. Navy helicopter pilot who flew missions to Europe and the Middle East, former federal prosecutor, and soccer mom of four who has Democrats emptying their pockets. Amy S. Rosenberg, Philly.com, "A female Navy pilot, a pro-gun dentist, the guy Christie told to shut up: New Jersey on national stage in Tuesday's primary," 1 June 2018 Santiago loaded the gun in a bathroom and came out firing, emptying two ammunition clips before lying on the floor and surrendering to police. Curt Anderson, chicagotribune.com, "Suspect in deadly Florida airport shooting pleads guilty in exchange for life sentence," 21 May 2018 Walking through the metal detectors at Wrigley Field, people are asked to empty their pockets of keys, cell phones and wallets. Bobby Nightengale, Cincinnati.com, "Joey Votto has trouble making it past Wrigley Field security before Cincinnati Reds game," 7 July 2018 The plan was to empty the Woodbridge store, starting in the back and pushing all of the toys to the front. Michael Corkery, New York Times, "At Toys ‘R’ Us, ‘There Is Nothing Left’: The Day It Closed for Good," 30 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Schedule a free pick-up for your Loop Tote filled with empties. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "Loop Store Will Refill Your Haagen-Dasz and Other Groceries, Cutting Down on Waste," 25 Mar. 2019 After her performance came to an end, no one left empty handed. Kendall Lindsay, Vogue, "Billie Eilish Performs at the Launch Party for Garage Magazine's Latest Issue," 6 Feb. 2019 When storing empties, nest smaller ones inside big ones. Good Housekeeping, "Rethink Your Food Storage," 10 Jan. 2011 Instead, the company has an app for drivers called Schneider Compass that directs him to the empties. Erica E. Phillips, WSJ, "Trucks Shift Into Higher Gear With New Technology," 25 July 2018 The idea of leaving floor space empty is a dramatic turnabout for an industry that historically raced to open more stores and expand its shelf space. Suzanne Kapner, WSJ, "Macy’s Radical Plan to Save Itself: Shrink," 12 Nov. 2018 At midnight, the lamp is brimming with illumination and empties, ready for another day. Arlene Hirst, New York Times, "What’s Hot (and Cool) in Home Lighting," 8 May 2018 Typically, the host nation empties noticeably between the two. Brian Straus, SI.com, "Panama's Lopsided Loss Won't Damper Party of Celebrating First World Cup," 18 June 2018 In response, fans of recreational abalone diving are paying professional divers to literally vacuum up the spiny creatures — which have little commercial value — from the sea floor with a fiberglass pipe that empties into a big net. Tara Duggan, San Francisco Chronicle, "Northern California divers try to save abalone population — with a giant sea urchin vacuum," 5 Apr. 2018

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

Adjective

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

Verb

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

Noun

1844, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for empty

Adjective

Middle English, from Old English ǣmettig unoccupied, from ǣmetta leisure, perhaps from ǣ- without + -metta (probably akin to mōtan to have to) — more at must

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Statistics for empty

Last Updated

10 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for empty

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

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More Definitions for empty

empty

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of empty

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: containing nothing
: not having any people : not occupied
: having no real purpose or value

empty

verb

English Language Learners Definition of empty (Entry 2 of 3)

: to remove the contents of (something) : to make (something) empty
: to remove all of (something) from a container
: to become empty

empty

noun

English Language Learners Definition of empty (Entry 3 of 3)

: an empty bottle or can

empty

adjective
emp·​ty | \ ˈemp-tē How to pronounce empty (audio) \
emptier; emptiest

Kids Definition of empty

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : containing nothing an empty box
2 : not occupied or lived in : vacant an empty house an empty seat
3 : not sincere or meaningful an empty threat

Other Words from empty

emptiness noun the emptiness of outer space

empty

verb
emptied; emptying

Kids Definition of empty (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to remove the contents of Please empty the wastebasket.
2 : to remove all of (something) from a container Empty the flour into the bin.
3 : to become unoccupied The school quickly emptied.
4 : to flow into The river empties into the gulf.

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More from Merriam-Webster on empty

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for empty

Spanish Central: Translation of empty

Nglish: Translation of empty for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of empty for Arabic Speakers

Comments on empty

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