\ ˈswēt How to pronounce sweet (audio) \

Definition of sweet

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : being, inducing, or marked by the one of the five basic taste sensations that is usually pleasing to the taste and typically induced by sugars (as sucrose or glucose) — compare bitter entry 1 sense 1a, salty entry 1 sense 1b, sour entry 1 sense 1, umami entry 2
b(1) of a beverage : containing a sweetening ingredient : not dry
(2) of wine : retaining a portion of natural sugar
2a : pleasing to the mind or feelings : agreeable, gratifying often used as a generalized term of approvalhow sweet it is
b : marked by gentle good humor or kindliness a sweet disposition
c : fragrant a sweet aroma
d(1) : delicately pleasing to the ear or eye a sweet melody
(2) : played in a straightforward melodic style sweet jazz
f : very good or appealing a sweet job offer a sweet sports car
3 : much loved : dear
4a : not sour, rancid, decaying, or stale : wholesome sweet milk
b : not salt or salted : fresh sweet water sweet butter
c : free from excessive acidity used especially of soil
d : free from noxious gases and odors
e : free from excess of acid, sulfur, or corrosive salts sweet crude oil
5 : skillful, proficient a sweet golf swing
6 used as an intensivetake your own sweet time
sweet on
: having a crush on



Definition of sweet (Entry 2 of 4)

: in a sweet manner



Definition of sweet (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : something that is sweet to the taste: such as
a : a food (such as a candy or preserve) having a high sugar content fill up on sweets
b British : dessert
c British : hard candy
2 : the pleasant taste sensation typically produced by sugars (such as sucrose or glucose) — compare bitter entry 2 sense 1b, salty entry 2, sour entry 2 sense 1b, umami entry 1
3 : a pleasant or gratifying experience, possession, or state
5a archaic : fragrance
b sweets plural, archaic : things having a sweet smell


biographical name
\ ˈswēt How to pronounce Sweet (audio) \

Definition of Sweet (Entry 4 of 4)

Henry 1845–1912 English phonetician

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Other Words from sweet


sweetly adverb
sweetness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for sweet

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of sweet in a Sentence

Adjective She likes her coffee sweet. That candy is too sweet. He's a really sweet guy. She has a sweet smile. It was sweet of her to take care of them. Noun I'm trying to cut down on sweets. remember to brush your teeth after eating sweets
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Our favorites: ▪ That $8.99 extra-dry prosecco, a little sweeter but lemony, perfect for tossing in an Aperol spritz on a fall afternoon. Kathleen Purvis, charlotteobserver, "Should you get excited about Lidl’s wines?," 25 Aug. 2017 Also here is a sweet drawing of Ms. Ashoona, her grandmother, standing slightly askew in a polka-dot kerchief and Nana Mouskouri-style eyeglasses. Jason Farago And Martha Schwendener, New York Times, "What to See in New York Art Galleries This Week," 24 Aug. 2017 A post shared by 송다니 (@songdani) on Oct 26, 2016 at 10:35am PDT For an unexpected, subtle look, tie a skinny scarf in a sweet little bow and let the ends cascade down the side of your outfit. 5. Kaitlin Menza, Redbook, "11 Fun, Fresh Ways to Wear a Scarf," 22 Aug. 2017 By some reckonings, there were few places that should have been as sweet to watch a total solar eclipse than St. Joseph. Rick Montgomery, Eric Adler, Scott Canon, Joe Robertson, David Frese, Jason Hancock, Judy Thomas, kansascity, "Whether soggy or sensational, total solar eclipse awes KC region," 21 Aug. 2017 Cloud cover threatens to reduce visibility in the central U.S., and threats of thunderstorms threaten the sweet views near Charleston, South Carolina. Jen Kirby, Daily Intelligencer, "A Procrastinator’s Guide to Catching the Solar Eclipse," 21 Aug. 2017 Doc Popcorn/Dippin' Dots brings sweet and savory together in Center Court across from Victoria's Secret. Bob Bong, Daily Southtown, "Durbins restaurant to call it quits in Summit," 15 Aug. 2017 Thanks to the fine folks at International Delight, your mornings are about to get a whole lot sweeter. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "International Delight Just Released a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Creamer, And No You’re Not Dreaming," 8 Aug. 2017 At least dear, sweet Pod will make an appearance in one of those 50 minutes. Matt Miller, Esquire, "Here's Some Bad News About the Next Game of Thrones Episode," 4 Aug. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Cheese and yogurt show up daily to weekly, in moderate portions; chicken and eggs are okay on occasion, but the use of other meats and sweets is very limited. Sandee Lamotte, CNN, "Overcome the coronavirus meat shortage by adopting one of the world's healthiest diets," 20 May 2020 Its decorations were mainly candles and small presents, which were often homemade food and sweets. Anne Lawrence-mathers, Quartz, "Reinvention of Christmas decorations is a historical tradition," 24 Dec. 2019 Many who participated in the auctions didn't want the sweets for themselves and asked Rutz to donate them to health care facilities. NBC News, "Biden says Trump should order flags be flown at half-staff," 2 May 2020 Today's pandemic is not the first time Girl Scouts went above and beyond the sweets to give back to communities in need. Alaa Elassar, CNN, "America's Girl Scouts have been impacting the world for generations. Now they're helping those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic," 14 Apr. 2020 For the first time, the bitter herbs, the Easter hams, the iftar sweets will be set on empty tables. Ellen Mcgirt, Fortune, "WHO chief to racist insults: ‘I don’t give a damn’," 10 Apr. 2020 Smitten Kitchen blogged about the sweets a year later. Ana Calderone, PEOPLE.com, "These 5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies Are the Latest Viral Recipe — and They're Really Good," 7 Apr. 2020 The bundtinis would have been delicious, but the sweets delivered to her door were still perfect. Madison Smalstig, USA Today, "95-year-old Texas woman won't let coronavirus wreck her birthday," 3 Apr. 2020 In the meantime, the sweets are being sold at kreutherchocolate.com. Florence Fabricant, New York Times, "Peak, With 101st-Floor Views, Opens in Hudson Yards," 3 Mar. 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


13th century, in the meaning defined above


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sweet


Middle English swete, from Old English swēte; akin to Old High German suozi sweet, Latin suadēre to urge, suavis sweet, Greek hēdys

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Time Traveler for sweet

Time Traveler

The first known use of sweet was before the 12th century

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Statistics for sweet

Cite this Entry

“Sweet.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sweet. Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for sweet


How to pronounce Sweet (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sweet

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: containing a lot of sugar
: very gentle, kind, or friendly
chiefly British : very pretty or cute



English Language Learners Definition of sweet (Entry 2 of 2)

: a food that contains a lot of sugar : a sweet food
British : a piece of candy
British : a sweet food served at the end of a meal


\ ˈswēt How to pronounce sweet (audio) \
sweeter; sweetest

Kids Definition of sweet

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : containing or tasting of sugar sweet muffins
2 : having a pleasant sound, smell, or appearance a sweet fragrance sweet voices
3 : very gentle, kind, or friendly a sweet personality It was sweet of you to remember.
4 : pleasing to the mind or feelings : agreeable sweet memories
5 : much loved : dear my sweet child
6 : agreeable to oneself but not to others You took your sweet time!
7 : not sour, stale, or spoiled sweet milk
8 : not salt or salted sweet butter
9 : having a mild taste : not sharp sweet peppers
sweet on
: in love with

Other Words from sweet

sweetly adverb
sweetness noun



Kids Definition of sweet (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something (as candy) that contains or tastes of sugar


\ ˈswēt How to pronounce sweet (audio) \

Medical Definition of sweet

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: being or inducing the one of the four basic taste sensations that is typically induced by disaccharides and is mediated especially by receptors in taste buds at the front of the tongue — compare bitter, salt entry 2 sense 2, sour entry 1

Other Words from sweet

sweetness noun



Medical Definition of sweet (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something that is sweet to the taste especially : a food (as a candy or preserve) having a high sugar content don't fill up on sweets
2 : a sweet taste sensation

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More from Merriam-Webster on sweet

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sweet

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sweet

Spanish Central: Translation of sweet

Nglish: Translation of sweet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sweet for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about sweet

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