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See also: DRY



Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English drye, drie, dri, drige, dryge, drüȝe, Old English drȳġe ‎(dry; parched, withered), from Proto-Germanic *drūgiz, *draugiz ‎(dry, hard), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰerǵʰ- ‎(to strengthen; become hard), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰer- ‎(to hold, support). Cognate with Scots dry, drey ‎(dry), North Frisian drüg, driig, Saterland Frisian druuch ‎(dry), West Frisian droech ‎(dry), Dutch droog ‎(dry), Low German dröög ‎(dry), German dröge ‎(dull), Icelandic draugur ‎(a dry log). Related also to German trocken ‎(dry), West Frisian drege ‎(long-lasting), Danish drøj ‎(tough), Swedish dryg ‎(lasting, hard), Icelandic drjúgur ‎(ample, long), Latin firmus ‎(strong, firm, stable, durable). See also drought, drain, dree.

Alternative forms[edit]


dry ‎(comparative drier or dryer, superlative driest or dryest)

  1. Free from liquid or moisture.
    Could you hand me a dry towel?
    My throat feels itchy and dry.
    Cover the chicken as it bakes or it'll get too dry.
    • Addison
      The weather, we agreed, was too dry for the season.
    • Prescott
      Not a dry eye was to be seen in the assembly.
  2. (chemistry) Free of water in any state; anhydrous.
    Dry alcohol is 200 proof.
  3. Thirsty; needing drink.
  4. (of an alcoholic beverage) Lacking sugar or low in sugar; not sweet.
    I like to take a dry sherry before lunch on Sundays.
  5. Maintaining temperance; void or abstinent from alcoholic beverages.
    A former alcoholic, he's been dry for almost a year now.
    You'll have to drive out of this dry county to find any liquor.
    It was a dry house.
  6. (of a person or joke) Subtly humorous, yet without mirth.
  7. (of a scientist or his laboratory) Not working with chemical or biological matter, but, rather, doing computations.
  8. (masonry) Built without mortar; dry-stone.
  9. (of animals) Not giving milk.
    The cow is dry.
  10. Lacking interest or amusement; barren; unembellished.
    a very dry lecture on archaeology
    • Alexander Pope
      These epistles will become less dry, more susceptible of ornament.
  11. (fine arts) Exhibiting a sharp, frigid preciseness of execution, or lacking delicate contours and soft transitions of colour.
  • (free from liquid or moisture): wet
  • (abstinent from alcohol): wet
  • (of a scientist or lab: doing computation): wet
Derived terms[edit]


dry ‎(plural drys or dries)

  1. (US) A prohibitionist (of alcoholic beverages).
    • Noah S. Sweat, Jr.
      The drys were as unhappy with the second part of the speech as the wets were with the first half.
  2. (chiefly Australia, with "the") The dry season.
    • 1938, Xavier Herbert, Capricornia, New York: D. Appleton-Century, 1943, Chapter VII, p. 91, [1]
      [] one was sodden to the bone and mildewed to the marrow and moved to pray [] for that which formerly he had cursed—the Dry! the good old Dry—when the grasses yellowed, browned, dried to tinder, burst into spontaneous flame— []
  3. (Australia) An area of waterless country.

Etymology 2[edit]

From Old English dryġan ‎(to dry), from dryġe ‎(dry)


dry ‎(third-person singular simple present dries, present participle drying, simple past and past participle dried)

  1. (intransitive) To lose moisture.
    The clothes dried on the line.
  2. (transitive) To remove moisture from.
    Devin dried her eyes with a handkerchief.
  3. (transitive, intransitive, figuratively) To cease or cause to cease.
    Their sources of income dried up.
    The stream of chatter dried up.
  4. (obsolete, intransitive) To be thirsty.
    • c. 1390, William Langland, Piers Plowman, I:
      And drynke whan þow dryest · ac do nouȝt out of resoun.
Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.


Alternative forms[edit]


From Proto-Albanian *drūna, from the same root as dru. Cognate to Sanskrit द्रुणा ‎(druṇa, bow), Iranian *drũna, Persian durũna ‎(rainbow)[1].


dry m (indefinite plural dryna, definite singular dryni, definite plural drynat)

  1. kind of lock, bolt

Related terms[edit]


  1. ^ Orel, Vladimir (1998), “dry”, in Albanian Etymological Dictionary, Leiden, Boston, Köln: Brill, page 77

Old English[edit]



Borrowed from a Brythonic language, representing Proto-Brythonic *drɨw, from Proto-Celtic *druwits ‎(druid).


drȳ m

  1. a sorcerer or magician
    Hi woldon forbærnan ðone dry. —Ælfric’s Homilies, volume 1. (‘They would burn the sorceror.’)

Derived terms[edit]