water down


Definition of water down 

transitive verb

: to reduce or temper the force or effectiveness of watered down the plan

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Other words from water down

watered-down \ˈwȯ-tərd-ˈdau̇n, ˈwä- \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for water down


adulterate, cut, dilute, extend, lace, sophisticate, thin, weaken


enrich, fortify, richen, strengthen

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Examples of water down in a Sentence

watered down the cocktails while jacking up their prices

Recent Examples on the Web

By Thursday morning, before it was even released, some of the President's most faithful followers had already written a letter to Horowitz complaining the report had been watered down. Issie Lapowsky, WIRED, "Inspector General Criticizes FBI and Comey, But Some Want More," 14 June 2018 There’s no guarantee that new privacy rules won’t be watered down. Aaron Pressman, Fortune, "Make No Mistake, Mark Zuckerberg's Appearance Fanned the Flames for More Privacy Rules," 11 Apr. 2018 FoRT advocates say this will water down the impact the test could have in improving the quality of reading instruction. Alan J. Borsuk, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Borsuk: Literacy may not be a constitutional right, but it's a life imperative," 6 July 2018 Many in comedy today think that too many specials are being released, that comics are not spending enough time developing their art and that a deluge of mediocre stand-up will water down quality. Jason Zinoman, New York Times, "A Netflix Experiment Gives Deserving Comics Their 15 Minutes," 2 July 2018 The California Legislature’s has knocked that plan off the ballot and gives Big Tech time to try to get the new standards watered down. Hiawatha Bray, BostonGlobe.com, "Calif.’s Net privacy law gives consumers more clout, and Big Tech may be just fine with that," 1 July 2018 Meanwhile coyotes would breed with red wolves, creating hybrids that watered down the gene pool. Robbie George, National Geographic, "Rule to Allow Hunting Could Doom Rare Red Wolves," 29 June 2018 But only a fool would dump that money into something that’s been watered down to fractions of pennies. Billboard, "David Banner Gets Candid About Hip-Hop's Instability and the Controversy Surrounding the 'N-Word'," 29 June 2018 Democrats have their own problems: too many candidates, which could water down the party’s chances. Washington Post, "Republicans turn on each other in California US House fight," 29 May 2018

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

1811, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

8 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for water down

The first known use of water down was in 1811

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