water down

watered down; watering down; waters 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 How to pronounce watered-down (audio) , 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

As Bloomberg reports, the tech industry made a last ditch push to water down the bill this month, but the effort came up short. Jeff John Roberts, Fortune, "Here Comes America’s First Privacy Law: What the CCPA Means for Business and Consumers," 13 Sep. 2019 Cutting Nate Orchard, Akeem Spence, Tank Carradine and Vincent Taylor watered down an already thin defensive line, and will put an added burden on everyone else’s shoulders to stop the run and pressure quarterbacks. Keven Lerner, sun-sentinel.com, "Miami Dolphins’ 53-man roster breakdown: Only 22 players from last season’s team on this year’s roster," 3 Sep. 2019 Before the test, dishonest farmers watered down their milk before selling it to processors because milk was paid for strictly by volume. Rick Barrett, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Margarine smugglers, a deadly milk war and more flavor Wisconsin's dairy history," 28 Aug. 2019 The renewable mandates that might have forced something to happen regardless have now been watered down. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Hypocritical Ohio law links nuke support to coal subsidies, cuts off renewables," 24 July 2019 During the late 20th century, social democracy’s programmatic profile also shifted, as the party watered down or even abandoned its commitment to the postwar social democratic consensus, instead embracing much of the emerging new neoliberal one. Sheri Berman, Vox, "The development and decay of democracy," 18 June 2019 Starting around late 2013, waters off the West Coast rose two to four degrees above normal, as a high-pressure system in the Pacific shut down westerly winds that channel cool waters down the West Coast. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Colder waters off West Coast mark end of “the blob”," 27 Aug. 2019 Quit watering down the tail-gate drinks when your friend starts telling you for the thousandth time how short-term pain will lead to long-term gain. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: Embrace the pain? #TrustTheTank? Rules to survive this Dolphins season | Commentary," 23 July 2019 So the companies are trying to blunt the court decision and water down the bill. Michael Hiltzik, latimes.com, "Uber and Lyft try to blunt a court ruling that their drivers are employees," 11 July 2019

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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Statistics for water down

Last Updated

22 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for water down

The first known use of water down was in 1811

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Comments on water down

What made you want to look up water down? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to fake an opponent out of position

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