\ ˈslō How to pronounce slow (audio) \

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)

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 How to pronounce slow (audio) \ 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 The Heat's slow start was hardly surprising, considering their COVID-19 testing issues earlier in the day that led to the game being delayed five hours. Omari Sankofa Ii, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Pistons' scorching start doesn't last in 113-107 loss to Miami Heat," 19 Jan. 2021 About the Ducks: Anaheim is off to a slow start, beginning 0-1-1 after a two-game series vs. Vegas. Sarah Mclellan, Star Tribune, "Victor Rask will center top line as unbeaten Wild plays Anaheim tonight," 18 Jan. 2021 Ball has gotten off to a slow start in what is a crucial contract year for him. Christian Clark, NOLA.com, "After missing time with knee soreness, Lonzo Ball says he's 'definitely' playing against Jazz," 18 Jan. 2021 Negotiations were off to a slow start as the insurgent group continues attacks on Afghan government forces while keeping their promise not to attack U.S. and NATO troops. NBC News, "Gunmen kill 2 female judges in Afghan capital, court official says," 17 Jan. 2021 Modelling by the Covid-19 Actuaries Response Group suggests that because of the slow start to the roll-out, even if everything goes to plan, hospital admissions will not decline sharply until early February. The Economist, "Long covid How the pressure is being felt in English hospitals," 16 Jan. 2021 Lynn said after the game that his team couldn’t afford a slow start against an offense designed to run the ball and control the clock. Joseph Hoyt, Dallas News, "‘They put it on us’: Effort was there, but execution was not in Cedar Hill’s lopsided title loss to Katy," 16 Jan. 2021 After a slow start last season, the Bruins won nine of their last 11 games to place themselves in contention for the NCAA tournament berth. Dylan Hernández Columnist, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Mick Cronin’s Bruins are putting on a show even if no one’s there," 15 Jan. 2021 Yet a month after the first shots were given, the nation’s vaccination campaign is off to a slow start with about 10.3 million people getting the first of two shots, although more than 29 million doses have been delivered. Time, "Joe Biden Unveils a $1.9 Trillion Plan to Stem the Virus and Steady the Economy," 15 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb One of the biggest criticisms from fans who attended the event in 2016 was the drastically long and slow-moving lines to get inside AT&T Stadium. Joey Hayden, Dallas News, "WWE will return to AT&T Stadium in 2022 for WrestleMania 38," 16 Jan. 2021 Harbaugh, who led the 49ers to a Super Bowl in four seasons before an unceremonious exit to Michigan after the 2014 season, is in slow-moving extension talks with Michigan, as his current deal expires following the 2021 season. Marlowe Alter, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Lions head coach search: ESPN picks best and worst matches, including Jim Harbaugh," 30 Dec. 2020 Liu’s branch of the family tree is the source of two dishes; dan dan mian and a beef noodle soup that’s been slow-cooked for three days. Adam Tschorn, Los Angeles Times, "Chifa Chinese and Peruvian restaurant: Come for the food, feast on the look," 8 Dec. 2020 The average rotisserie chicken, which is slow-cooked under direct heat and often sold in grocery stores, is about 2 pounds. Popular Science, "Five better turkey alternatives to serve this Thanksgiving," 24 Nov. 2020 The variety of slow-cooked smoked meats range from Akaushi smoked brisket to a 10-oz. Marcy De Luna, Houston Chronicle, "Fertitta Family, King Ranch to open King Ranch restaurant in Houston," 14 Oct. 2020 The lawsuit marks the latest attempt to deal with government’s failure to protect the public from health-damaging pollution from the facility, a slow-moving disaster that has become a symbol of environmental injustice. Tony Barboza Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "California sues to recover costs for Exide lead cleanup, but community still wants justice," 19 Dec. 2020 According to MacKie, the rules governing frozen cherry pies are often used internally at the FDA as an example of the kind of outdated, slow-moving mind-set the agency is struggling to overcome. Washington Post, "The Trump administration’s latest deregulation target: Frozen cherry pie," 18 Dec. 2020 Mothers are supposed to show speedy progress in a sprawling, unwieldy and slow-moving system that is rife with inherent conflicts and double standards. USA Today, "Her memory of the midnight attack was muddled, but her battered body bore the story.," 17 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Precautions like wearing masks, taking extra care when washing hands, and keeping activities outdoors and at a distance from others have all been implemented to slow the spread of Covid-19. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, "How Covid-19 Precautions Have Kept Flu Cases Low," 21 Jan. 2021 The Dutch government proposed a ban on flights and a nationwide curfew to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Fox News, "Netherlands proposes ban on flights, curfew to combat coronavirus," 21 Jan. 2021 Virus health restrictions over the past year helped slow the spread of the coronavirus, but many businesses had to limit operations and some closed altogether. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, "VP Harris sets example, Bow Wow apologizes, vaccine shortages: News from around our 50 states," 21 Jan. 2021 The social distancing orders, intending to slow the spread of COVID-19, first went into place on March 18. Mark Dunphy, ExpressNews.com, "Citations: Food truck employee cited for COVID-19 violations at Cowboys Dancehall," 19 Jan. 2021 Mask requirements are strongly urged by health officials to slow the spread of the coronavirus, and its implementation is expected to have a direct effect on future infections and deaths. Travis Caldwell, CNN, "States look for more Covid-19 vaccine doses as the nation's death toll nears 400,000," 16 Jan. 2021 Some 18 million people are collecting unemployment benefits, and layoffs are on the rise as governors and mayors impose restrictions to slow the spread of the virus. Larry Edelman, BostonGlobe.com, "Biden’s giant rescue bill depends on the narrowest of math," 15 Jan. 2021 If not for those checks from the congressional coronavirus relief packages, the U.S. economy would have cratered and millions more would have suffered as states order businesses to close to slow the spread of COVID-19. Los Angeles Times, "Column: Just when they need it most, 800 Compton residents are about to get free money," 15 Jan. 2021 Oregon’s top priority defensive will be trying to slow Hall. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, "Iowa State-Oregon live stream (1/2): How to watch Fiesta Bowl online, TV, time," 2 Jan. 2021

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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Time Traveler for slow

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for slow

Last Updated

24 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Slow.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/slow. Accessed 27 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for slow

How to pronounce slow (audio)

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
\ ˈslō How to pronounce slow (audio) \
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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Comments on slow

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