supple

adjective
sup·​ple | \ ˈsə-pəl How to pronounce supple (audio) also ˈsü- \
suppler\ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)lər How to pronounce supple (audio) \; supplest\ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)ləst How to pronounce supple (audio) \

Definition of supple

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : compliant often to the point of obsequiousness
b : readily adaptable or responsive to new situations
2a : capable of being bent or folded without creases, cracks, or breaks : pliant supple leather
b : able to perform bending or twisting movements with ease : limber supple legs of a dancer
c : easy and fluent without stiffness or awkwardness sang with a lively, supple voice— Douglas Watt

supple

verb
suppled; suppling\ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce supple (audio) \

Definition of supple (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to make pacific or complaisant supple the tempers of your race— Laurence Sterne
2 : to alleviate with a salve
3 : to make flexible or pliant

intransitive verb

: to become soft and pliant

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Other Words from supple

Adjective

supplely \ ˈsə-​pə(l)-​lē How to pronounce supple (audio) \ or supply \ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)lē How to pronounce supple (audio) \ adverb
suppleness \ ˈsə-​pəl-​nəs How to pronounce supple (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for supple

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for supple

Adjective

elastic, resilient, springy, flexible, supple mean able to endure strain without being permanently injured. elastic implies the property of resisting deformation by stretching. an elastic waistband resilient implies the ability to recover shape quickly when the deforming force or pressure is removed. a resilient innersole springy stresses both the ease with which something yields to pressure and the quickness of its return to original shape. the cake is done when the top is springy flexible applies to something which may or may not be resilient or elastic but which can be bent or folded without breaking. flexible plastic tubing supple applies to something that can be readily bent, twisted, or folded without any sign of injury. supple leather

Examples of supple in a Sentence

Adjective a dome tent outfitted with supple fiberglass tent poles shoes made from supple leather
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Glycation occurs when sugar molecules attach onto fats and proteins and create advanced glycation end products, or AGEs, which can make collagen and elastin proteins less supple -- and the skin more likely to wrinkle. Sandee Lamotte, CNN, 5 June 2021 Mike Love’s once-supple voice sounded flat and strained for much of the concert. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 31 May 2021 They are made from premium leather that is soft and supple. Chris Hachey, BGR, 25 May 2021 The hand of mycelium leather is so buttery soft and supple that Hermès, known for upholding the most stringent standards with its leather, is already experimenting with it. Alison S. Cohn, Harper's BAZAAR, 14 May 2021 Can’t wait a few washes for that trademark supple feel? Ashley Abramson, Forbes, 16 Apr. 2021 This is a big wine, with a sense of power—rich, with red and dark fruit edged with savory notes and a bold but supple structure that lingers in the mouth. Sara L. Schneider, Robb Report, 24 May 2021 Exfoliators slough away layers of dead skin to reveal soft, supple skin beneath it. Sian Babish, chicagotribune.com, 18 Apr. 2021 Time to say hello to soft, supple skin with the new moisturizers, serums, and more hitting shelves. Angela Trakoshis, Allure, 1 May 2021

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for supple

Adjective

Middle English souple, from Anglo-French suple, from Latin supplic-, supplex entreating for mercy, supplicant, perhaps from sub- + -plic- (akin to plicare to fold) — more at ply

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Time Traveler for supple

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for supple

Last Updated

7 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Supple.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/supple. Accessed 15 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for supple

supple

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of supple

of a body or body part : able to bend or twist easily
: soft and able to bend or fold easily

supple

adjective
sup·​ple | \ ˈsə-pəl How to pronounce supple (audio) \
suppler\ ˈsə-​plər \; supplest\ ˈsə-​pləst \

Kids Definition of supple

1 : capable of bending or of being bent easily without stiffness, creases, or damage a supple body supple leather
2 : adaptable a supple mind

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