\ ˈləl How to pronounce lull (audio) \
lulled; lulling; lulls

Definition of lull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cause to sleep or rest : soothe He was lulled to sleep by her soothing voice.
2 : to cause to relax vigilance were lulled into a false sense of security



Definition of lull (Entry 2 of 2)

1 archaic : something that lulls especially : lullaby
2 : a temporary pause or decline in activity the early-morning lull in urban noise : such as
a : a temporary calm before or during a storm
b : a temporary drop in business activity

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Synonyms & Antonyms for lull

Synonyms: Verb

becalm, calm, compose, lullaby, quiet, quieten [chiefly British], salve, settle, soothe, still, tranquilize (also tranquillize)

Synonyms: Noun

break, breath, breather, interruption, pause, recess

Antonyms: Verb

agitate, discompose, disquiet, disturb, key (up), perturb, upset, vex

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Examples of lull in a Sentence


The music lulled him to sleep. the absence of attacks for such an extended period had lulled the nation into a false sense of security


we took the opportunity of a lull in the conversation to announce that we were engaged to be married
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Julie BennettGetty Images Many people were lulled into thinking that there was no more work left to do. Alicia Garza, Marie Claire, "Can We Have a Conversation About Abortion Bans and the South?," 29 May 2019 Once the weird burning smell from the room’s heater went away, I was lulled to sleep by its gentle growl. Crystal Paul, The Seattle Times, "A nightmare drive down the Pacific Coast Highway conjures childhood memories," 7 Aug. 2018 Cory Gearrin used a lulling pace and a perfect slider to escape a bases-loaded, one-out situation on a stunning 1-2-3 double play where Eduardo Nunez stopped running after the first out was made at home on his slow bouncer up the first-base line. Ryan Divish, The Seattle Times, "Mariners lose first game of season on pinch-hit home run in ninth inning," 29 Mar. 2019 Because planes effectively fly themselves for long periods, pilots can become lulled into losing awareness of system functions. Robert Wall, WSJ, "Man Vs. Machine at 40,000 Feet," 6 Jan. 2019 But a large part of why that strategy is working is because Durant is allowing himself to be lulled into it. Tim Bontemps,, "Kevin Durant is reverting to old habits as Warriors get pushed to brink of elimination," 25 May 2018 On Christmas the packages sat untouched through an interminable breakfast and a long, ritualistic coffee-drinking, as if to lull the morning’s presents into a false sense of security. Alexandra Kleeman, WSJ, "New Year’s Resolution: Pop Champagne Whenever," 28 Dec. 2018 You are lulled into a hypnotic state that dulls the senses and the prefrontal cortex. Anne Slowey, Condé Nast Traveler, "Fear and Self-Loathing in the American Southwest," 25 July 2018 People like Mills can be lulled into thinking a hurricane is less dangerous when the rating of a storm is reduced. Fox News, "Hurricane rating system fails to account for deadly rain," 18 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The result is a funding lull for many smaller companies that could continue for a while. Julie Steinberg, WSJ, "Investor Interest in Chinese Tech Begins 2019 Not With a Bang but a Whimper," 2 Jan. 2019 And a culture that worships at the altar of plans will produce children that find intermissions, lulls, or even 10-week summer breaks just short of intolerable. Rachel Simmons,, "Why you should stop asking new graduates what they're doing next," 10 June 2018 Illustration: Grant Robertson There is a lull for a moment, as Mr. Pollack struggles to compose himself. Tunku Varadarajan, WSJ, "A Parkland Father’s Quest for Accountability," 11 Jan. 2019 Firefighters have taken advantage of the lull to cut firebreaks in dry forests and pile up soil to control the blaze. Umair Irfan, Vox, "The Paradise fire is catastrophic. And the wildfire threat to California is only growing.," 17 Nov. 2018 The Latest on the slowing of Kilauea volcano's eruption (all times local): 3 p.m. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is taking advantage of a lull in Kilauea's eruption to assess damage to the park. Fox News, "The Latest: Hawaii Volcanoes National Park assessing damage," 17 Aug. 2018 Indeed, opinions of the liberal order’s future range from imminent demise, to mere lull, to it having never existed in the first place. Paul Poast, Washington Post, "These surprising countries could emerge as the heroes of NATO — and the liberal world order," 10 July 2018 In 2014, when the Brewers had a strong season until a late-season lull, the franchise finished eighth. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Attendance is way down at Major League Baseball games – but not in Milwaukee," 18 June 2018 The migration authorities, taking advantage of the lull, began registering the migrants this week and issuing them letters of safe passage. Kirk Semple, New York Times, "As Migrant Caravan Splinters, Trump Takes Credit and Mexico Scoffs," 5 Apr. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1719, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lull

Verb and Noun

Middle English; probably of imitative origin

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Statistics for lull

Last Updated

6 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lull

The first known use of lull was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for lull



English Language Learners Definition of lull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cause (someone) to fall asleep or become sleepy
: to cause (someone) to feel safe and relaxed instead of careful and alert



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

: a brief time when an action or activity stops


\ ˈləl How to pronounce lull (audio) \
lulled; lulling

Kids Definition of lull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make or become sleepy or less watchful lulled by the bobbing of the raft … I went to sleep again.— Theodore Taylor, The Cay



Kids Definition of lull (Entry 2 of 2)

: a period of calm or inactivity There was a lull in the storm.

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More from Merriam-Webster on lull

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lull

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lull

Spanish Central: Translation of lull

Nglish: Translation of lull for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lull for Arabic Speakers

Comments on lull

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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