profound

adjective
pro·​found | \ prə-ˈfau̇nd, prō-\

Definition of profound

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : having intellectual depth and insight
b : difficult to fathom or understand
2a : extending far below the surface
b : coming from, reaching to, or situated at a depth : deep-seated a profound sigh
3a : characterized by intensity of feeling or quality
b : all encompassing : complete profound sleep profound deafness

profound

noun
pro·​found | \ prə-ˈfau̇nd, prō-\

Definition of profound (Entry 2 of 2)

archaic
: something that is very deep specifically : the depths of the sea

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Other Words from profound

Adjective

profoundly \ prə-​ˈfau̇n(d)-​lē , prō-​ \ adverb
profoundness \ prə-​ˈfau̇n(d)-​nəs , prō-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for profound

Synonyms: Adjective

abstruse, arcane, deep, esoteric, hermetic (also hermetical), recondite

Antonyms: Adjective

shallow, superficial

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Examples of profound in a Sentence

Adjective

Here, for the first time, a journalist gains access to the archive of one of the most comprehensive longitudinal studies in history. Its contents, as much literature as science, offer profound insight into the human condition—and into the brilliant, complex mind of the study's longtime director, George Vaillant. — Joshua Wolf Shenk, Atlantic, June 2009 This isn't escapism, or denial of grief; it is acceptance of the facts of life, the map of profound relationship to the grief that is part of life … — Tom Piazza, Why New Orleans Matters, 2005 The status of women, though probably the most profound single difference between the two civilizations, attracted far less attention than such matters as guns, factories and parliaments. — Bernard Lewis, What Went Wrong?, 2002 Despite all the respect, it was hard not to feel a twinge of schadenfreude at O'Hara's fall from esteem, which had caused him profound bitterness. — Kingsley Amis, Memoirs, 1991 His knowledge of history is profound. Her books offer profound insights into the true nature of courage. the profound mysteries of outer space a profound sense of loss His paintings have had a profound effect on her own work.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Its abiding theme is the richness of friendship, an abundance more profound than anything under the tree. Danny Heitman, WSJ, "An Ode to Holiday Companionship," 21 Dec. 2018 Just one in-person conversation had a profound effect on a voter’s decision to go to the polls, and such in-person conversations have been found to boost turnout by 20 percent. Rebecca Gale, Marie Claire, "How to Impact the Midterms, Even If You Don’t Live in a Swing State," 22 Oct. 2018 All of these platform improvements will go hand-in-hand with the modest performance gains, and the more profound improvements in battery life that the new, 1W panel technology will achieve. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Intel's Whiskey Lake notebook chip launches, emphasizing connectivity this time around," 28 Aug. 2018 The simple ability for everyone to communicate instantly with everyone else has had a profound effect on almost every aspect of our lives. Dwight Silverman, San Antonio Express-News, "How to be a good internet citizen," 3 July 2018 Think of the energy savings that could result from replacing all of that heavy subway car with 20 pounds of hoverboard—savings that are even more profound in the off-peak hours, when there may be only one person riding on a hefty subway car. Peter Wayner, The Atlantic, "The New York City Subway Is Beyond Repair," 9 June 2018 There is something profound about it that stays with you, for a long time. Andrew Sullivan, Daily Intelligencer, "Why We Should Say Yes to Drugs," 25 May 2018 There’s something profound about bringing these characters together for a powwow–that space is unique in its ability to gather a conglomeration of identities, cultures and families. Time, "In Conversation With Two Rising Voices in Native American Literature," 22 May 2018 Which is where my obsession with all things creamy and cheesy came from: Rich, full-fat dairy intensely and simultaneously elicited feelings of profound, unrequited pleasure and deep, deep shame. Amiel Stanek, Bon Appetit, "A Lactose Intolerant's Guide to Loving Cheese Again," 27 Apr. 2018

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1621, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for profound

Adjective and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French parfunt, profond deep, from Latin profundus, from pro- before + fundus bottom — more at pro-, bottom

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Statistics for profound

Last Updated

7 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for profound

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

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More Definitions for profound

profound

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of profound

: having or showing great knowledge or understanding

: difficult to understand : requiring deep thought or wisdom

: very strongly felt

profound

adjective
pro·​found | \ prə-ˈfau̇nd \

Kids Definition of profound

1 : having or showing great knowledge and understanding a profound thinker
2 : very deeply felt profound sorrow

Other Words from profound

profoundly adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on profound

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with profound

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for profound

Spanish Central: Translation of profound

Nglish: Translation of profound for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of profound for Arabic Speakers

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