mellow

adjective
mel·​low | \ ˈme-(ˌ)lō How to pronounce mellow (audio) \

Definition of mellow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a of a fruit : tender and sweet because of ripeness
b of a wine : well aged and pleasingly mild
2a : made gentle by age or experience She was a tough and demanding teacher, but she became mellow in her old age.
b : rich and full but free from garishness or stridency the mellow tones of an old violin
c : warmed and relaxed by or as if by liquor After a few drinks we felt pretty mellow.
d : pleasant, agreeable He was in a mellow mood.
e : laid-back mellow background music
3 of soil : having a soft and loamy consistency

mellow

verb
mellowed; mellowing; mellows

Definition of mellow (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to become mellow often used with out

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from mellow

Adjective

mellowly adverb
mellowness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for mellow

Synonyms: Adjective

euphonious, lyric, lyrical, mellifluent, mellifluous, melodic, melodious, musical

Antonyms: Adjective

unlyrical

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of mellow in a Sentence

Adjective

The painting captures the mellow light of a summer evening. This wine is very mellow. He was in a mellow mood. She was a tough and demanding teacher, but she became mellower in her old age. He's a very mellow guy. After a couple of drinks we all started feeling pretty mellow.

Verb

She was a tough and demanding teacher, but she has mellowed in her old age. The wine needs time to mellow. She was a tough and demanding teacher, but old age has mellowed her.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

However, the investigators did find a pipe and a jar of Purple Widow cannabis—a strain thought to mellow depression—and a refrigerator stocked with lunch meat, fresh beef, hot dogs, and chicken. Lauren Smiley, Glamour, "Two White Moms. Six Black Kids. One Unthinkable Tragedy. A Look Inside the ‘Perfect’ Hart Family," 6 Sep. 2018 Northern Lights Campout Music Party Hang out and enjoy ambient, mellow chamber music by Ólafur Arnalds, performed by CNM curator and violinist, Julia Ogrydziak, and friends. San Francisco Chronicle, "Classical music and dance listings," 24 May 2018 This allows ingredients in one bin to age and mellow while materials are being added to a second bin. Lee Reich, The Seattle Times, "Fall is the perfect time to build a compost bin," 16 Oct. 2018 The mellow introspective song, by lead singer and guitarist Dewey Bunnell, reached No. 1 on Billboard’s pop chart, and sent the band’s eponymous album to No. Marc Myers, WSJ, "On the Journey to ‘A Horse With No Name’," 16 July 2018 This cute, mellow song has a slight reggae beat and is just light and fun and summery. Billboard Staff, Billboard, "Viva Friday Playlist: The Best New Latin Music From Bad Bunny, Silvestre Dangond & More," 29 June 2018 The melody is accompanied by a mellow drum beat and R&B crooner Jaheim’s velvety voice. Marcus Harrison Green, The Seattle Times, "Grandparents raising grandkids say they need more help from Washington state," 28 Dec. 2018 Musk, who did most of the talking, was mellow and jokey and spent a longer-than-usual time answering questions after his initial presentation. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Ars takes a first tour of the length of The Boring Company’s test tunnel," 19 Dec. 2018 The bass-baritone Daniel Okulitch, who created the role of Ennis in Madrid, sings with mellow sound and affecting vulnerability. New York Times, "Review: ‘Brokeback Mountain,’ the Opera, Falls Short of Its Potential," 1 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

People normally get cranky when the economy is doing badly but mellow out as things improve. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Voters Rebel in Europe’s Big Three," 10 Dec. 2018 This intense, unflitered IPA is mellowed by the sweet taste of golden honey. Fox News, "Best craft beers to drink right now," 3 May 2017 Pro tip: Toss thinly sliced raw onion with lime juice to mellow its bite. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Chicken Mole Tacos," 17 Jan. 2019 Traditional wine presses sometimes crush the grape seeds along with the grapes, releasing a bitter flavor that mellows during the aging process. Aleksandra Crapanzano, WSJ, "The Winery That Fits in a Closet," 12 Oct. 2018 Missy Robbins, the chef of Lilia in Brooklyn, makes a pesto of two parts parsley, one part marjoram, to mellow the marjoram’s assertive fragrance. Aleksandra Crapanzano, WSJ, "6 Fresh Takes on Pesto," 3 Aug. 2018 Available in the United States, its casks are famously carried aboard ships that cross the Equator twice before it is sold, to mellow the spirit. Jason Wilson, New York Times, "Jump-Starting the Aquavit Renaissance," 13 Mar. 2018 Just as her late idol Bowie's extreme transformations eventually mellowed out over time, so, too, have Gaga’s. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "Lady Gaga's Beauty Evolution: From Mother Monster to A Star Is Born," 10 Sep. 2018 But these are also young wines, and the more ambitious among them will benefit from aging five to 10 years to allow these complexities to uncoil while mellowing the rippling acidity. Eric Asimov, New York Times, "2016 Dry German Rieslings: Graceful, Resonant, Delicious," 3 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of mellow

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1575, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for mellow

Adjective and Verb

Middle English melowe

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about mellow

Statistics for mellow

Last Updated

12 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mellow

The first known use of mellow was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for mellow

mellow

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of mellow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: pleasantly rich, full, or soft : not harsh, bright, or irritating
: having a pleasing rich flavor that develops over time
: very calm and relaxed

mellow

verb

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

: to become or to cause (someone or something) to become less harsh, irritating, nervous, etc.

mellow

adjective
mel·​low | \ ˈme-lō How to pronounce mellow (audio) \

Kids Definition of mellow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : fully ripe or mature a mellow peach
2 : made mild by age
3 : being clear, full, and pure : not harsh a mellow sound a mellow color
4 : very calm and relaxed After dinner, we began to feel mellow.

Other Words from mellow

mellowness noun

mellow

verb
mellowed; mellowing

Kids Definition of mellow (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make or become mild or relaxed especially over time

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on mellow

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with mellow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for mellow

Spanish Central: Translation of mellow

Nglish: Translation of mellow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of mellow for Arabic Speakers

Comments on mellow

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

WORD OF THE DAY

an act or instance of returning to life

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!