sodden

1 of 2

adjective

sod·​den ˈsä-dᵊn How to pronounce sodden (audio)
1
a
: dull or expressionless especially from continued indulgence in alcoholic beverages
sodden features
b
: torpid, sluggish
sodden minds
2
a
: heavy with or as if with moisture or water
the sodden ground
b
: heavy or doughy because of imperfect cooking
sodden biscuits
soddenly adverb
soddenness noun

sodden

2 of 2

verb

soddened; soddening ˈsäd-niŋ How to pronounce sodden (audio)
ˈsä-dᵊn-iŋ

transitive verb

: to make sodden

intransitive verb

: to become soaked or saturated

Did you know?

Nowadays, seethed is the past tense and past participle form of the verb seethe (which originally meant "to boil or stew"). Originally, however, seethe could also be conjugated in the past tense as sod and in the past participle as sodden. By the 14th century, sodden had become an independent adjective synonymous with boiled. And, by the 16th century, it had taken on the figurative sense used to describe someone who appears dull, expressionless, or stupid, particularly as a result of heavy drinking. Today, sodden is commonly used as a synonym of soaked or saturated. Seethe followed a different figurative path: while one who is sodden may appear dull, torpid, or sluggish, one who is seething is highly agitated, like a pot of boiling water.

Examples of sodden in a Sentence

Adjective eyes peering out between strands of sodden hair Verb soldiers' boots that were soddened by endless hours in muddy trenches cornflakes that had been soddened in milk to the point of mush
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
Michael Caine plays a sodden British journalist during the 1950s occupation of what was then known as French Indochina. Dennis Perkins, EW.com, 5 Apr. 2024 Over hundreds of years, the Dutch have struggled to manage their sodden patchwork of land. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, 25 Mar. 2024 Here in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, birds soar the Pacific Flyway, cows graze beside sodden rice fields and red reeds poke from still depths. Hayley Smith, Los Angeles Times, 29 Feb. 2024 Also like the current storm, more strong winds and flooding rain is in the forecast for the sodden mid-Atlantic and Northeast by Friday and into Saturday, AccuWeather meteorologist Bob Larson told USA TODAY. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, 9 Jan. 2024 Two big eyes peer out from under a rain sodden jacket and widen at the sight of Father Christmas at the window. Kate Brady, Washington Post, 23 Dec. 2023 In the first, the group’s Pete Doherty and Carl Barât recorded a typically free-wheeling performance and posted it to Instagram, leaning deep into the tune’s natural sodden sentimentality. Kory Grow, Rolling Stone, 21 Dec. 2023 The sodden pompom on his beanie had sunk into the folds of his wet cap. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, 9 Dec. 2023 Heavy rain ahead of a three-day weekend on Friday afternoon had initially led to traffic snarls, the sudden cancellation of an Elton John concert and sodden highways. Natasha Frost, New York Times, 27 Jan. 2023
Verb
Adding to the misery, the rainy season has set in, flooding already sodden tent camps where many live. A Special Correspondent, Los Angeles Times, 28 Dec. 2023 Gordon’s dresses, in shades of pink and blue — like party favors at a gender reveal — were too long and sodden with colored stones. Gia Kourlas, New York Times, 6 Oct. 2023 Moldering houses, sodden with rainwater. Nora Mishanec, San Francisco Chronicle, 3 Feb. 2023 Nathan Borchelt has been testing, rating, and reviewing outdoor and travel products for decade, and has spent many trips plying the rivers, oceans, lakes, and sodden hiking trails throughout the world. Nathan Borchelt, Travel + Leisure, 31 May 2022 The soliloquies are abstract, poetic, and sodden with longing and fear—more songs than attempts at talk. Vinson Cunningham, The New Yorker, 17 May 2021 Plastic bags and bottles, coffee lids, yogurt cups, flip-flops, and sodden stuffed animals drifted past, coated in yellow scum. Seth Harp, Harper's Magazine, 27 Apr. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sodden.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

Middle English soden, from past participle of sethen to seethe

First Known Use

Adjective

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1812, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of sodden was in 1589

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Dictionary Entries Near sodden

Cite this Entry

“Sodden.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sodden. Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

sodden

adjective
sod·​den
ˈsäd-ᵊn
1
: heavy with moisture : soaked
2
a
: dull or lacking in expression
b
: sluggish, dull
sodden minds
soddenly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on sodden

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