soften

verb soft·en \ ˈsȯ-fən \
Updated on: 10 Nov 2017

Definition of soften

softened; softening play \ˈsȯ-fə-niŋ, ˈsȯf-niŋ\
transitive verb
1 :to make soft or softer
2 a :to weaken the military resistance or the morale of especially by harassment (such as preliminary bombardment) often used with up
b :to impair the strength or resistance of often used with up
  • soften up a sales prospect
intransitive verb
:to become soft or softer
  • her face softened

softener

play \ˈsȯ-fə-nər, ˈsȯf-nər\ noun

Examples of soften in a Sentence

  1. The butter will soften if left on the counter overnight.

  2. The recipe called for one stick of butter, softened.

  3. The oil is used to soften and preserve the leather.

  4. The lotion softens dry skin.

  5. The company has softened its stance on dating in the workplace.

  6. Her face softened when he entered the room.

  7. His criticism of the president has softened in the past year.

  8. The grass softened my fall.

Recent Examples of soften from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'soften.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of soften

14th century



SOFTEN Defined for English Language Learners

soften

verb

Definition of soften for English Language Learners

  • : to become less hard or firm or to make (something) less hard or firm

  • : to make (something) less dry or rough

  • : to make (something) less severe, harsh, extreme, etc.


SOFTEN Defined for Kids

soften

verb soft·en \ ˈsȯ-fən \

Definition of soften for Students

softened; softening
1 :to make or become soft or less firm
  • Let the wax soften in the sun.
2 :to make or become gentler or less harsh
  • The elder's stern expression softened.
  • —Brian Jacques, Redwall

softener

noun


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