: slightly or moderately wet : damp
I love cookies when they are moist and chewy.
: tearful
the eyes of both of us … were moist with the joy of successJack London
: characterized by high humidity
Fog is formed when warm moist air moves over a cold surface.
moistly adverb
moistness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for moist

wet, damp, dank, moist, humid mean covered or more or less soaked with liquid.

wet usually implies saturation but may suggest a covering of a surface with water or something (such as paint) not yet dry.

slipped on the wet pavement

damp implies a slight or moderate absorption and often connotes an unpleasant degree of moisture.

clothes will mildew if stored in a damp place

dank implies a more distinctly disagreeable or unwholesome dampness.

a prisoner in a cold, dank cell

moist applies to what is slightly damp or not felt as dry.

treat the injury with moist heat

humid applies to the presence of much water vapor in the air.

a hot, humid climate

Examples of moist in a Sentence

I love cookies when they are moist and chewy. The pork chops were tender and moist. a moist and spongy chocolate cake The plant grows best in direct sunlight and with rich, moist soil. She dabbed her moist eyes with a handkerchief. Fog is formed when warm moist air moves over a cold surface. The eggs will hatch sooner in warm, moist conditions. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Water cuttings and keep the soil moist, but don't water-log the cuttings. Southern Living Editors, Southern Living, 19 Feb. 2024 Plants maintain their foliage longer in moist soil. Nadia Hassani, Better Homes & Gardens, 31 Jan. 2024 Huge Rice Krispies treats ($2.50), moist and tantalizing, were topped with sprinkles and irresistible to my 10-year-old, while an oversize chocolate-chip cookie ($2) was snapped up for the more straightforward dessert eater. Anna Caplan, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 31 Jan. 2024 Despite warm and moist conditions at the burial site, known as Jabuticabeira II, researchers discovered well-preserved, though incomplete, skeletons. Christian Thorsberg, Smithsonian Magazine, 29 Jan. 2024 The sauce was sweet and tangy, the meat was moist and full of flavor, with the right combination of chewy and fall off the bone. Daniel Desrochers, Kansas City Star, 19 Jan. 2024 Create your own powdery patterns with a heart-shape stencil. 07 of 21 Red Velvet Heart Cake View Recipe From the moist red velvet cake to the fudgy chocolate frosting, everything about this heart cake is decadent. Sarah Martens, Better Homes & Gardens, 31 Jan. 2024 If your kids are active in sports like swimming, track and field, or even baseball, athlete’s foot could potentially become a regular occurrence due to the moist environments they are often exposed to like pool decks and locker room showers. Sherri Gordon, Verywell Health, 30 Jan. 2024 Greens and yellows indicate very moist air which is capable of generating more rain and snow. Mary Gilbert, CNN, 30 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'moist.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English moiste, from Anglo-French, perhaps from Vulgar Latin *muscidus, alteration of Latin mucidus slimy, from mucus nasal mucus

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of moist was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near moist

Cite this Entry

“Moist.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/moist. Accessed 24 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


: slightly or moderately wet
moist earth
: characterized by high humidity
moistly adverb
moistness noun

Medical Definition


: slightly or moderately wet
: marked by a discharge or exudation of liquid
moist eczema
: suggestive of the presence of liquid
used of sounds heard in auscultation
moist rales

More from Merriam-Webster on moist

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