supple

adjective
sup·​ple | \ ˈsə-pəl How to pronounce supple (audio) also ˈsü- \
suppler\ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)lər How to pronounce suppler (audio) \; supplest\ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)ləst How to pronounce supplest (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 suppling (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 supplely (audio) \ or supply \ ˈsə-​p(ə-​)lē How to pronounce supply (audio) \ adverb
suppleness \ ˈsə-​pəl-​nəs How to pronounce suppleness (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 When cooked, the rice keeps its distinct shape but with a more supple texture. Randy Thanthong-knight, Bloomberg.com, "Thailand Bets on a New Rice Grain to Feed the World," 12 Nov. 2020 Playing infrequently, Woods has turned in several sparkling rounds when his swing was fluid and his movements supple. Bill Pennington, New York Times, "Count Tiger Woods Out? Not at Augusta National," 10 Nov. 2020 This year, however, the Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum cream for your bottom might be able to help your epidermis return to its most supple and nourished form. Melissa Lee, USA TODAY, "Sephora's huge Holiday Savings Event is here with sitewide discounts for all Insiders," 5 Nov. 2020 The lower height and supple leather and felt upper results in a more flexible and lighter weight design than the original, which kept us comfortable throughout the day. Adrienne Donica, Popular Mechanics, "Winter is No Match for These Top-Performing Snow Boots," 5 Nov. 2020 And then your skin remains soft and supple, darlings. Ying Chu, Marie Claire, "Billy Porter Wants You to Mask and Have a Drink With Him," 27 Oct. 2020 It is made almost entirely of supple marabou and therefore moves beautifully in the water. Field & Stream, "The 10 Best Trout Flies for Late Fall Fishing," 13 Oct. 2020 The supple baritone of Alexander Birch Elliott was a consistent highlight, while soprano Andrea Carroll gave the flamboyant Musetta just the right blend of flair and, ultimately, regret. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Arias in an arena parking lot? San Diego Opera’s drive-in ‘La bohème’ a bold, gear-shifting turn," 25 Oct. 2020 Luckily, there are products on the market specifically designed to help the skin stay strong and supple, as well as ones that help to repair a depleted skin barrier. Meirav Devash, Allure, "9 Skin-Care Products That Make Menopause a Little Easier," 24 Oct. 2020

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

22 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Supple.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/supple. Accessed 24 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for supple

supple

adjective
How to pronounce supple (audio)

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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Comments on supple

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