Did you know?

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

dry - 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.

Thesaurus diagram

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.

adjective     dry pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
  1. 1
    something that is dry has no water in it or on it

    Is the grass dry enough to cut?

    Vegetables should be stored in a cool dry place.

    wipe/towel/pat something dry:

    Wash the lettuce and pat it dry.

    Synonyms and related words
    1. a.
      used about a liquid such as paint when it has become hard or solid

      Someone walked on the concrete before it was dry.

      Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    dry weather is when there is no rain

    The weather is usually dry and sunny at this time of year.

    1. a.
      used about periods of time

      Tomorrow will be mostly dry.

  3. 3
    dry hair or skin feels rough because it does not have enough moisture in it
    Synonyms and related words
  4. 4
    dry food contains little or no liquid, such as fat or juice

    The chicken was overcooked and dry.

    All they gave me was some dry bread (=with no butter or anything else on it).

  5. 6
    very serious and boring

    The style was too dry for a children’s book.

  6. 7
    feeling thirsty

    Can I have a drink? I’m really dry.

    1. a.
      if your mouth is dry, it contains very little saliva, for example because you are nervous
  7. 8
    dry alcoholic drinks are not sweet
  8. 9
    a child that is dry does not need to wear a nappy because they can control when they urinate

derived word


noun [uncountable]
Synonyms and related words
  • Facebook
  • Twitter

deep learning

a form of machine learning which incorporates the use of neural networks

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

snap election

a general election … that is called earlier than expected

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