sunk·​en | \ ˈsəŋ-kən How to pronounce sunken (audio) \

Definition of sunken

1 : submerged especially : lying at the bottom of a body of water
2a : hollow, recessed sunken cheeks
b : lying in a depression a sunken garden
c : settled below the normal level
d : constructed below the normal floor level a sunken living room

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Examples of sunken in a Sentence

Her eyes were sunken and lifeless. our convalescing guest's sunken cheeks soon filled out on a diet of my mother's cooking
Recent Examples on the Web On the 20th anniversary of Diana’s death, the sunken garden at Kensington Palace was transformed into a memorial garden for the late royal. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "How Meghan Markle Paid a Sweet Tribute to Princess Diana on Instagram," 13 May 2019 Only the remains of USS Arizona survivors can be interred on the sunken battleship. Alaa Elassar, CNN, "One of the last survivors of the USS Arizona will be interred on the sunken warship," 7 Dec. 2019 In a separate project, the deepest sunken shipwreck ever discovered was recently found in the Philippine Sea. Fox News, "World War I battlecruiser wreck discovered near the Falkland Islands," 6 Dec. 2019 Our outside table featured comfortable wicker-like chairs and a couch that my dining companions said felt a little too sunken and distant from the table. Michael Mayo,, "Review: Oceanic has fine seafood and a view, but service isn’t shipshape," 4 Dec. 2019 To reach the sunken aperitifs, Ocean X partnered with salvage company iXplorer. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Tsar Nicholas II’s Last Shipment of Booze Recovered From the Baltic Sea," 13 Nov. 2019 But Arkansas can’t fall into the sunken cost fallacy. John Talty |, al, "Arkansas should dump Chad Morris, Auburn with work to do," 3 Nov. 2019 The look’s latest champion, Demna Gvasalia of Balenciaga, introduced a phalanx of these human anomalies in his spring 2020 show, all chalky complexions and vulcanized lips and with prosthetics augmenting their otherwise sunken cheeks. New York Times, "It’s Halloween. Here’s What’s Haunting the Runways.," 29 Oct. 2019 Below Mount Polley, salmon returns have not significantly declined, but researchers are watching for effects of fish-eating organisms that ingest copper from the sunken tailings. Los Angeles Times, "This Alaska mine could generate $1 billion a year. Is it worth the risk to salmon?," 23 Oct. 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sunken

Middle English sonkyn, past participle of sinken to sink

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Time Traveler for sunken

Time Traveler

The first known use of sunken was in the 15th century

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Statistics for sunken

Last Updated

9 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sunken.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for sunken


How to pronounce sunken (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sunken

: completely covered with water : lying at the bottom of a sea, lake, etc.
: curving inward because of illness, age, etc.
: lying or built at a lower level than the surrounding area


sunk·​en | \ ˈsəŋ-kən How to pronounce sunken (audio) \

Kids Definition of sunken

1 : fallen in : hollow Zero's face looked like a jack-o'-lantern … with sunken eyes and a drooping smile.— Louis Sachar, Holes
2 : lying at the bottom of a body of water sunken ships
3 : built or settled below the surrounding or normal level a sunken garden

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More from Merriam-Webster on sunken

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sunken

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sunken

Spanish Central: Translation of sunken

Nglish: Translation of sunken for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sunken for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sunken

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to insert between existing elements

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