Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

deepen - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb deepen pronunciation in American English /ˈdipən/
Word Forms
present tense
present participledeepening
past tensedeepened
past participledeepened
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    [intransitive] if a bad situation deepens, it becomes worse
  2. 2
    [intransitive/transitive] if a feeling or relationship deepens, or if something deepens it, it becomes stronger

    His anxiety deepened when he heard the news.

    Both sides are now deepening their commitment to the peace process.

  3. 3
    [intransitive/transitive] if someone’s knowledge or understanding deepens, or if something deepens it, they know or understand more

    I’m trying to deepen my understanding of local history.

  4. 4
    [intransitive/transitive] if water deepens, or if someone deepens it, it becomes deeper

    plans to deepen channels in the Port of New York

  5. 5
    [intransitive] if a color deepens, it becomes darker
  6. 6
    [intransitive/transitive] if a sound deepens, or if someone deepens it, it becomes lower

    The man suddenly deepened his voice.

  7. 7
    [intransitive/transitive] if a mystery deepens, or if something deepens it, it becomes more complicated and difficult to understand


to fall over forwards so that your face hits the ground or another surface

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the activity of exploring abandoned buildings and other manmade structures

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play