slum·​ber | \ ˈsləm-bər \
slumbered; slumbering\ ˈsləm-​b(ə-​)riŋ \

Definition of slumber

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to sleep lightly : doze
b : sleep
2a : to be in a torpid, slothful, or negligent state
b : to lie dormant or latent



Definition of slumber (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : sleep
b : a light sleep

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Other Words from slumber


slumberer \ ˈsləm-​bər-​ər \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for slumber

Synonyms: Verb

catnap, doze, nap, rest, sleep, snooze

Synonyms: Noun

bed, catnapping, dozing, napping, repose, rest, resting, shut-eye, sleep, slumbering, snoozing, z's (or zs)

Antonyms: Noun

consciousness, wake, wakefulness

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Examples of slumber in a Sentence


she slumbered for hours while the train rolled on slumbering restlessly in the tropical heat


She fell into deep slumber. a toddler looking so innocent and peaceful in slumber
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Depicting napping knights, slumbering artisans and slumping kings, the series is on loan from an Oxfordshire country house, where the series has been decorating the salon walls since it was installed there in the 1890s. J.s. Marcus, WSJ, "In London, Medieval Legends Through Modern Eyes," 19 Oct. 2018 Since then, the beautiful Provençal city with its Roman amphitheater surrounded by pretty 18th-century townhouses and mansions and dainty 19th-century villas and ’60s housing projects has long slumbered. Hamish Bowles, Vogue, "What to See at the Rencontres d’Arles Photo Festival," 24 Aug. 2018 But none of these theories hold a candle to my favorite conjecture of all: slumbering digital aliens. Derek Thompson, The Atlantic, "But, Seriously, Where Is Everybody?," 22 June 2018 Hough looked up to see the bear slumbering in the tree. CBS News, "Bear takes dip in California hot tub, drinks margarita," 3 July 2018 How many sons of Italian or Jewish or Polish parents slumbered in slums untaught (and) unlearned, their potential lost forever to the nation and human race? James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: RFK’s speech in apartheid South Africa remains relevant 50 years after his assassination," 5 June 2018 And, of course, there is always the chance that Martian methanogens still slumber in the planet’s subsurface even today, periodically awakening during clement periods to produce their gaseous calling-card. Adam Mann, Scientific American, "Curiosity Rover Uncovers Long-Sought Organic Materials on Martian Surface," 7 June 2018 Doctors and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine say they like that activity trackers – which can monitor not only exercise but how much of your time in bed is spent slumbering — have gotten people more interested in their sleeping habits. Sarah Gantz,, "The high cost of getting a good night's sleep," 6 June 2018 These airfields and hangars, filled with the ghosts of spy planes past, slumbered as L.A.’s celebrity associations took center stage. Geoff Manaugh, The Atlantic, "Los Angeles, America’s Future Spaceport," 17 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Power Moves: This Moon’s passage through your Pisces-ruled zone of deep slumber is asking you to reconnect to life beyond logic, Scorpio. Bess Matassa, Teen Vogue, "Weekly Horoscopes October 8-14," 8 Oct. 2014 Tax and regulatory reforms were jolting the supply side of the economy from its slumber. Kevin Warsh, WSJ, "Fed Tightening? Not Now," 16 Dec. 2018 Wake from your slumber, Manny MUA fans, your favorite YouTuber is back – and lots of drama came with him. Kelsey Stiegman, Seventeen, "Jeffree Star Calls Manny 'MUA' Gutierrez "F*cking Pathetic" and a "Sociopath" After He Posts Video About Mental Health," 11 Oct. 2018 The flight—a short hop from Devonport, Tasmania, to King Island in the Bass Strait—went a bit over course, soaring aimlessly past its destination for 29 miles before air traffic controllers roused the pilot from his slumber. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "A Sleeping Pilot Accidentally Flew 29 Miles Past Intended Destination," 27 Nov. 2018 This cousin to the happy lamp produces an artificial sunrise meant to naturally and gradually pull you out of your slumber. Elizabeth Taufield, Vogue, "Seasonal Depression No More! Happy Lamps to Cure Your Blues," 8 Oct. 2018 But either way, the cloud of illegitimacy hanging over Kavanaugh’s head will be helpful in waking the public from its slumber. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation will delegitimize the Supreme Court — and that’s good," 5 Oct. 2018 Third-quarter earnings reports next week from JPMorgan Chase , Citigroup , Wells Fargo and PNC Financial Services won’t be spectacular but are likely to be solid, and any upside surprises could wake the sector from its slumber. Aaron Back, WSJ, "Don’t Be Surprised by Good News at Banks," 3 Oct. 2018 Miami center Hassan Whiteside is expected to wake up from his slumber. Keith Pompey,, "Marco Belinelli wants Sixers to set the tone early in Game 2," 16 Apr. 2018

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


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

History and Etymology for slumber


Middle English slomren, slombren, frequentative of slumen to doze, probably from slume slumber, from Old English slūma; akin to Middle High German slumen to slumber

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Time Traveler for slumber

The first known use of slumber was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for slumber


slum·​ber | \ ˈsləm-bər \
slumbered; slumbering

Kids Definition of slumber

 (Entry 1 of 2)



Kids Definition of slumber (Entry 2 of 2)

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More from Merriam-Webster on slumber

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with slumber

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for slumber

Spanish Central: Translation of slumber

Nglish: Translation of slumber for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of slumber for Arabic Speakers

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