sound·​ing | \ ˈsau̇n-diŋ How to pronounce sounding (audio) \

Definition of sounding

 (Entry 1 of 2)



Definition of sounding (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : measurement of depth especially with a sounding line
b : the depth so ascertained
c soundings plural : a place or part of a body of water where a hand sounding line will reach bottom
2 : measurement of atmospheric conditions at various heights
3 : a probe, test, or sampling of opinion or intention

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Other Words from sounding


soundingly adverb

Examples of sounding in a Sentence


The sailors were taking soundings as the ship approached the coast.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Now, despite the similar sounding name, a tomatillo is not, in fact, a tomato. Paul Stephen,, "Tomatillos star in 5 dishes beyond green salsa," 7 Aug. 2019 In a country where government bonds yield next to nothing, Mrs. Watanabe—the nickname for Japan’s retail investors—has been known to pay more attention to big dividends and other easy-sounding returns than to risks. Jacky Wong, WSJ, "SoftBank May Regret Its Big IPO Payday," 19 Dec. 2018 Before Wednesday, her noble-sounding name was virtually unknown outside her home country. Erik Kirschbaum,, "She's about to be one of the most powerful women in Europe. Who is Ursula von der Leyen?," 3 July 2019 While many of the products have similar-sounding names, their underlying holdings or indexes and their hedging mechanisms can vary. Ari I. Weinberg, WSJ, "It’s Now or Never for ‘Hedged’ Bond ETFs," 4 Nov. 2018 In a series of four different experiments, the team discovered cats showed a meaningful response to their own names—even after hearing four similar-sounding nouns or the names of other cats living in the home or the cat café. Carrie Arnold, National Geographic, "Cats know their names—why it's harder for them than dogs," 4 Apr. 2019 Thanks to the emergence of the American private space industry, the United States Air Force can consider a wild-sounding possibility: rocket launches that blast cargo into space to land anywhere in the world within half an hour. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force Is Actually Considering Rocket Launches to Move Cargo Around the Globe," 29 Oct. 2018 The fierce-sounding name was close to Ms. Kraus’s heart, as a University of Michigan graduate. Scott Calvert, WSJ, "Amazon Kept HQ2 Under Wraps Using These Code Names," 17 Nov. 2018 Editor's note: This story has been corrected to clarify how sounding rockets fly. Meghan Bartels,, "NASA Will Launch 2 Rockets to Test a Mars Parachute and Track 'Nanoflares'," 6 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Both present their own ideas to Malzahn during the week and serve as a sounding board for the seventh-year head coach. Tom Green |, al, "Inside the offensive dynamic that will dictate Auburn’s season," 27 Aug. 2019 Being a twinfluencer means having someone around you to act as a sounding board, brainstorm with, or simply hold the camera. Taylor Lorenz, The Atlantic, "Twinfluencers Are Taking Over the Internet," 12 Aug. 2019 The Advisory Council contemplates the future of the Connecticut Society of CPAs and the accounting profession, and in doing so serves as a sounding board and source of information for the CTCPA Board of Directors., "Community News For The East Hartford Edition," 7 Aug. 2019 His duties include driving Rick (whose license has been suspended) to and from auditions and sets, performing minor household repairs and generally being available as a sounding board and drinking partner. New York Times, "‘Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood’ Review: We Lost It at the Movies," 24 July 2019 Single Bulls may feel a little unsettled during this transit, so reach out to friends as a sounding board. Venus Australis,, "Your Horoscope This Week," 14 July 2019 My mother has been my sounding board and my support, as a mother should be. Judith Martin, The Mercury News, "Miss Manners: I’m terrified she’ll let slip what I told her in confidence," 21 June 2019 My mother has been my sounding board and my support, as a mother should be. Judith Martin, Washington Post, "Miss Manners: Daughter worries about spilled beans when mom befriends MIL," 21 June 2019 Long after trends like grunge, gangsta rap and rap rock have faded, the joyous sounding Nukes keep rolling. Matt Wake |,, "The ‘other guy’ in an iconic Huntsville band," 18 June 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for sounding

Last Updated

18 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sounding

The first known use of sounding was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for sounding



English Language Learners Definition of sounding

: a measurement of the depth of water
: something that is done to find out what people think about something

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Comments on sounding

What made you want to look up sounding? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


concealment of treason or felony

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