slow

adjective
\ˈslō \

Definition of slow 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : mentally dull : stupid a slow student

b : naturally inert or sluggish

2a : lacking in readiness, promptness, or willingness

b : not hasty or precipitate was slow to anger

3a : moving, flowing, or proceeding without speed or at less than usual speed traffic was slow

b : exhibiting or marked by low speed he moved with slow deliberation

c : not acute a slow disease

d : low, gentle slow fire

4 : requiring a long time : gradual a slow recovery

5 : having qualities that hinder rapid progress or action a slow track

6a : registering behind or below what is correct the clock is slow

b : less than the time indicated by another method of reckoning

c : that is behind the time at a specified time or place

7a : lacking in life, animation, or gaiety : boring the first chapter is a bit slow

b : marked by reduced activity business was slow a slow news week

slow

adverb

Definition of slow (Entry 2 of 3)

: slowly

slow

verb
slowed; slowing; slows

Definition of slow (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make slow or slower : slacken the speed of slow a car often used with down or up

intransitive verb

: to go or become slower production of new cars slowed sharply

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Other Words from slow

Adjective

slowish \ˈslō-ish \ adjective
slowness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for slow

Verb

delay, retard, slow, slacken, detain mean to cause to be late or behind in movement or progress. delay implies a holding back, usually by interference, from completion or arrival. bad weather delayed our arrival retard suggests reduction of speed without actual stopping. language barriers retarded their progress slow and slacken also imply a reduction of speed, slow often suggesting deliberate intention medication slowed the patient's heart rate , slacken an easing up or relaxing of power or effort. on hot days runners slacken their pace detain implies a holding back beyond a reasonable or appointed time. unexpected business had detained her

Slow vs. Slowly: Usage Guide

Adverb

Some commentators claim that careful writers avoid the adverb slow, in spite of the fact that it has had over four centuries of usage. have a continent forbearance till the speed of his rage goes slower — William Shakespeare In actual practice, slow and slowly are not used in quite the same way. Slow is almost always used with verbs that denote movement or action, and it regularly follows the verb it modifies. beans … are best cooked long and slow — Louise Prothro Slowly is used before the verb a sense of outrage, which slowly changed to shame — Paul Horgan and with participial adjectives. a slowly dawning awareness … of the problem Amer. Labor Slowly is used after verbs where slow might also be used burn slow or slowly and after verbs where slow would be unidiomatic. the leadership turned slowly toward bombing as a means of striking back — David Halberstam

Examples of slow in a Sentence

Adjective

The buyers were slow to act, and the house was sold to someone else. He was a quiet boy who seldom spoke, and some people thought he was a little slow. Business is slow during the summer. The first few chapters are slow, but after that it gets better.

Adverb

My computer is working slow. you need to go slow with this experiment, or you'll make mistakes

Verb

The car slowed and gradually came to a stop. The extra weight slowed the truck.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

And the cost of medical care increased slower than the overall rate of inflation, rising 1.9 percent during that same time. L.m. Sixel, Houston Chronicle, "Gasoline, electricity push consumer prices higher," 12 July 2018 Chelsea have made an unusually slow start to their summer transfer business by their usual high-spending standards, with the ongoing uncertainties over the managerial situation at Stamford Bridge still looming large on the agenda. SI.com, "Chelsea Miss Out on Colombian Attacker to Atalanta Despite Him Being Offered to Conte's Side," 11 July 2018 Pop music meditations, inflatable palm trees, slow dances, and untold family stories mix with humour, seagulls, and Gidget. SFChronicle.com, "Theater capsule reviews and listings, week of July 15," 12 July 2018 But with the court system only slightly slower than the stewards evaluating a tight photo finish, it’s unlikely there will be any final resolution any time soon. John Cherwa, latimes.com, "Racing! CHRB ready to tackle Golden Gate issue," 12 July 2018 People would drive by really slow looking at the house. Lukas Mikelionis, Fox News, "'Little House' star Melissa Gilbert trading 'Green Acres' life in Michigan for New York City," 11 July 2018 While research interest is growing, progress in the private sector for now is emerging but may be slow-going. Chelsea Harvey, Scientific American, "Cement Producers Are Developing a Plan to Reduce CO2 Emissions," 9 July 2018 Under that regime, internet connectivity was severely limited and frustratingly slow. Timothy Mclaughlin, WIRED, "How Facebook’s Rise Fueled Chaos and Confusion in Myanmar," 6 July 2018 At lower temperatures, reactions that break down drugs…occur at a much slower rate, leading to a longer product shelf life. Korin Miller, SELF, "Do You Actually Need to Keep Your Vaginal Ring in the Fridge?," 3 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

The acoustic melody swelled into a classic dusty barroom slow-dancer. Erik Ernst, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Blake Shelton may have gone Hollywood, but he shows at Summerfest that he's still country," 6 July 2018 Horsethief Reservoir is a no-wake lake, which forces power boaters to go slow. Chadd Cripe, idahostatesman, "Transformation continues at popular Idaho campground. But it isn't fully open yet. | Idaho Statesman," 21 May 2018 Everyone's checking their email and posting on Facebook — and the network speeds slow down. Scott Mcmurren, Anchorage Daily News, "Here’s what to expect on the road to Haines, by the numbers," 19 May 2018 Cruise missiles fly slow but low, in order to fly under most missile-detecting radars. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "U.S. Navy Re-Establishes the Second Fleet Because Russia Is on the Rise," 7 May 2018 Take it slow but do it quickly, suggests Simone Boos, an instructor at Barre3 Winter Park, which specializes in full-body workouts using only low-impact movements. Mike Candelaria, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Got 5 minutes? You have time to exercise," 11 July 2018 Taking it slow will allow GE to realize more value in a company formed less than a year ago. Spencer Jakab, WSJ, "GE’s Plan Rests on Promises and Some Sleight of Hand," 26 June 2018 Johnson, who rushed for 1,391 yards and 18 touchdowns last year with Auburn, is taking things slow. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Lions RB Kerryon Johnson gets advice from Barry Sanders," 5 June 2018 Since his election to the Senate in 2000, Nelson has grappled with the twin forces of slow-moving federal support and fading enthusiasm from the Florida Legislature. David Smiley And Mary Ellen Klas, miamiherald, "Florida’s politicians use slimy algae to muddy each other," 11 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But Adora's constant judgement doesn't slow down Camille, who heads straight to the Nash's home to talk to the father of the deceased Ann. Morgan Baila, refinery29.com, "Sharp Objects Premiere Recap: Home Is Where The Murder Is," 9 July 2018 After undergoing an emergency C-section, Williams suffered a pulmonary embolism that led to various complications that slowed her recovery. Sam Farmer, courant.com, "Humble Kerber Ends Serena's Comeback Trail In Wimbledon Final," 14 July 2018 What might slow the Croats now are their own tired legs; Croatia has played a combined 90 minutes more than the French in the past two weeks. Katherine Fominykh, baltimoresun.com, "World Cup final weekend: how to watch the matchups, plus time and odds," 14 July 2018 Switch to Bass Assassin jerkbaits, Hopkins Spoons and swimbaits at mid-morning or whenever the topwater bite slows down. Mark Blythe, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Central Florida fishing forecast: July 14," 13 July 2018 The to-do list in a return to Triple-A El Paso included continued work on his defense, shortening both a high leg kick and long stride and generally slowing down his overall approach. Jeff Sanders, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Padres' Franmil Reyes savoring teachable moments," 13 July 2018 Related While credit was unexpectedly high, the data showed the country’s broadest measure of money supply, M2, which includes cash in circulation as well as corporate and household deposits, slowed to a record low of 8% at the end of June. WSJ, "Cash Flows: Beijing Opens the Taps With Rail Projects and More Lending," 13 July 2018 The company faces hard questions about its long-term growth amid slowing hardware sales and competition from rivals like Google and Amazon. Daniel Arkin /, NBC News, "Apple's script for conquering Hollywood is a mystery so far," 13 July 2018 Yet China’s indebted economy was already slowing before the trade war. The Economist, "In its trade war with America, China dials down the hype," 12 July 2018

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

Adjective

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

Adverb

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1557, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for slow

Adjective

Middle English, from Old English slāw; akin to Old High German slēo dull

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Statistics for slow

Last Updated

11 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for slow

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

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More Definitions for slow

slow

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of slow

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: not moving quickly : not able to move quickly

: not happening quickly : taking more time than is expected or wanted

: not operating quickly

slow

adverb

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

: in a slow way or at a low speed

slow

verb

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

: to begin to move at a lower speed

: to make (something, such as a car) move at a lower speed

: to become slower

slow

adjective
\ˈslō \
slower; slowest

Kids Definition of slow

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : moving, flowing, or going at less than the usual speed slow music Traffic was slow.

2 : taking more time than is expected or desired We had a slow start on the project.

3 : not as smart or as quick to understand as most people

4 : not active Business was slow.

5 : indicating less than is correct My watch is five minutes slow.

6 : not easily aroused or excited Grandmother is slow to anger.

Other Words from slow

slowly adverb
slowness noun

slow

verb
slowed; slowing

Kids Definition of slow (Entry 2 of 3)

: to go or make go less than the usual speed The car slowed around the corner. The heavy load slowed the wagon.

slow

adverb
slower; slowest

Kids Definition of slow (Entry 3 of 3)

: in a slow way Can you talk slower?

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More from Merriam-Webster on slow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for slow

Spanish Central: Translation of slow

Nglish: Translation of slow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of slow for Arabic Speakers

Comments on slow

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