soul

1 of 2

noun

1
: the immaterial essence, animating principle, or actuating cause of an individual life
2
a
: the spiritual principle embodied in human beings, all rational and spiritual beings, or the universe
b
capitalized Christian Science : god sense 1b
3
: a person's total self
4
a
: an active or essential part
b
: a moving spirit : leader
5
a
: the moral and emotional nature of human beings
b
: the quality that arouses emotion and sentiment
c
: spiritual or moral force : fervor
6
: person
not a soul in sight
7
: personification
she is the soul of integrity
8
a
: a strong positive feeling (as of intense sensitivity and emotional fervor) conveyed especially by African American performers
b
: cultural consciousness and pride among people of African heritage
d

soul

2 of 2

adjective

: of, relating to, or characteristic of Black Americans or their culture
It will feature various local musicians such as Faithe, Rashawn Stallworth and Jamal Steele, all who embody a hip-hop and soul style to their music.Kamal Morgan
see also soul brother, soul food, soul music, soul sister

Example Sentences

Noun the souls of the dead He could not escape the guilt that he felt in the inner recesses of his soul. Some poor soul was asking for handouts on the street. a village of barely a hundred souls
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The lights were on in the big barn of a dining room, but there wasn’t a soul inside. Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, 27 Jan. 2023 At the heart and soul of the hotel, The Promenade was re-imagined by award-winning luxury designer Pierre-Yves Rochon. Brittany Anas, Forbes, 25 Jan. 2023 Imbued with radiant humility and a calm inner fire by Levy, Tammy is the old soul to David’s childish man. Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter, 23 Jan. 2023 Thompson has always been the heart and soul of the No. J.l. Kirven, The Courier-Journal, 20 Jan. 2023 But the heart and soul of any pizza is the crust, and this presentation was a world apart from the heavy, greasy stuff. Bahar Anooshahr, The Arizona Republic, 18 Jan. 2023 Based on a true story, Remember the Titans has heart, soul, and illustrates the power of teamwork. Stacey Grant, Seventeen, 18 Jan. 2023 With all this heartfelt material to choose from you're sure to find a birthday wish that will connect with your best bud heart and soul. Jill Gleeson, Country Living, 17 Jan. 2023 Dean Martin is an old soul, and it’s a personality that fits well in the classic steakhouse. Marc Bona, cleveland, 16 Jan. 2023
Adjective
Learn soul line-dances choreographed to R&B, jazz, gospel and Latin tunes. Linda Mcintosh, sandiegouniontribune.com, 9 July 2018 Soul QB Dan Raudabaugh threw for nine touchdowns and was named the game's MVP. baltimoresun.com, 13 Aug. 2017 Harper’s Cabin Learn about the history, nutrition and culture of African American foods, and about how soul food became important to African American families, their churches and social gatherings. Washington Post, 26 July 2017 Among its fans is soul artist Jimmy Levy of Miami, who was encouraged by his manager to try RecordGram, Mendelson said. Nancy Dahlberg, miamiherald, 23 June 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'soul.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English soule, from Old English sāwol; akin to Old High German sēula soul

First Known Use

Noun

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

Adjective

1969, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of soul was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near soul

Cite this Entry

“Soul.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/soul. Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

soul

1 of 2 noun
1
: the spiritual part of a person believed to give life to the body and in many religions thought to live forever
2
a
: the necessary part of something
b
: a person who leads or stirs others to action : leader
the soul of the campaign
3
a
: the part of one's personality having to do with feelings and the sense of what is right and wrong
felt my soul rebel against injustice
b
: spiritual force : fervor
4
: person
a kind soul
5
a
: a strong positive feeling conveyed especially by black American performers
souled
ˈsōld
adjective

soul

2 of 2 adjective
1
: of or relating to black Americans or their culture
soul food
2
: designed for or controlled by blacks
soul radio stations

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