sub·​dued | \ səb-ˈdüd How to pronounce subdued (audio) , -ˈdyüd\

Definition of subdued

: lacking in vitality, intensity, or strength subdued colors

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Other Words from subdued

subduedly \ səb-​ˈdü(-​ə)d-​lē How to pronounce subduedly (audio) , -​ˈdyü(-​ə)d-​ \ adverb

Examples of subdued in a Sentence

She spoke in a subdued voice. The color in the lobby is subdued.

Recent Examples on the Web

Events can either be deadly or subdued, depending on countless compositional variations and environmental conditions. Jill Kiedaisch, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists Blew Up Lava in a Backyard Volcano to Unlock the Secrets of the Most Violent Eruptions," 11 Dec. 2018 In the winter, the island sheds the sparkles for a more subdued richness: terra cotta soil, perennial wildflowers, almond blossoms, citrus trees, quiet mornings in Mediterranean coves. Elizabeth Wellington, Vogue, "For Authentic Ibiza, Visit in the Winter," 15 Feb. 2019 Falling energy prices could keep inflation subdued, tempering interest-rate expectations. Amrith Ramkumar, WSJ, "Oil’s Deja Vu Moment: OPEC Meets Amid Price Rout," 1 Dec. 2018 Throughout its 12-episode run, Insatiable crawls its way through a series of tired, stale gags, punching ever further downward, to finish with the most subdued of whimpers in its finale. Constance Grady, Vox, "Netflix’s Insatiable is somehow both obscenely cruel and terminally dull," 9 Aug. 2018 The colors are similar, yes, but a pink is arguably a little more subdued and easy to wear. Avery Matera, Teen Vogue, "Paris Jackson Wore the Most Orange I’ve Ever Seen in an Outfit," 30 Nov. 2018 Keep it all in balance with a more subdued top and shoes, with a bag that has just a hint of shimmer. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "6 Chic New Years Eve Outfit Ideas," 17 Dec. 2018 For the after-party, Lopez changed into something a little less voluminous and a lot more subdued. Chrissy Rutherford, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jennifer Lopez Brings the Drama in Giambattista Valli Haute Couture," 13 Dec. 2018 With characters—aunts and uncles, careless teachers, indifferent construction workers, bosses, girls, and thugs!— people who looked and felt real, if not a little subdued, in their colorations. Tom Chiarella, Popular Mechanics, "Stan Lee Taught Me to Love Storytelling," 13 Nov. 2018

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

1785, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for subdued

Last Updated

8 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for subdued

The first known use of subdued was in 1785

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More Definitions for subdued



English Language Learners Definition of subdued

: not strong, loud, intense, etc.


sub·​dued | \ səb-ˈdüd How to pronounce subdued (audio) , -ˈdyüd\

Kids Definition of subdued

: lacking in liveliness, intensity, or strength a subdued voice

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More from Merriam-Webster on subdued

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with subdued

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for subdued

Nglish: Translation of subdued for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of subdued for Arabic Speakers

Comments on subdued

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


to reflect, repel, echo, or resound

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