shallow

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See also: Shallow

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English schalowe (not deep, shallow); apparently related to Middle English schalde, schold, scheld, schealde (shallow), from Old English sċeald (shallow), Low German Scholl (shallow water). See also shoal.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈʃaləʊ/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈʃæl.oʊ/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -æləʊ
  • Hyphenation: shal‧low

Adjective[edit]

shallow (comparative shallower, superlative shallowest)

  1. Having little depth; significantly less deep than wide.
    This crater is relatively shallow.
    Saute the onions in a shallow pan.
  2. Extending not far downward.
    The water is shallow here.
  3. Concerned mainly with superficial matters.
    It was a glamorous but shallow lifestyle.
  4. Lacking interest or substance.
    The acting is good, but the characters are shallow.
  5. Not intellectually deep; not penetrating deeply; simple; not wise or knowing.
    shallow learning
  6. (obsolete) Not deep in tone.
    • 1631, [Francis Bacon], “(please specify |century=I to X)”, in Sylua Syluarum: Or A Naturall Historie. In Ten Centuries. [], 3rd edition, London: [] VVilliam Rawley; [p]rinted by J[ohn] H[aviland] for William Lee [], OCLC 1044372886:
      the sound perfecter and not so shallow and jarring
  7. (tennis) Not far forward, close to the net.
    • 2012 June 28, Jamie Jackson, “Wimbledon 2012: Lukas Rosol shocked by miracle win over Rafael Nadal”, in the Guardian[1]:
      Rosol spurned the chance to finish off a shallow second serve by spooning into the net, and a wild forehand took the set to 5-4, with the native of Prerov required to hold his serve for victory.

Antonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[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 Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Noun[edit]

shallow (plural shallows)

  1. A shallow portion of an otherwise deep body of water.
    The ship ran aground in an unexpected shallow.
    • 1631, [Francis Bacon], “(please specify |century=I to X)”, in Sylua Syluarum: Or A Naturall Historie. In Ten Centuries. [], 3rd edition, London: [] VVilliam Rawley; [p]rinted by J[ohn] H[aviland] for William Lee [], OCLC 1044372886:
      A swift stream is not heard in the channel, but [] upon shallows of gravel.
    • 1697, “(please specify the book number)”, in John Dryden, transl., The Works of Virgil: Containing His Pastorals, Georgics, and Æneis. [], London: [] Jacob Tonson, [], OCLC 403869432:
      dashed on the shallows of the moving sand
    • 1895, H. G. Wells, The Time Machine:
      It happened that, as I was watching some of the little people bathing in a shallow, one of them was seized with cramp and began drifting downstream.
  2. A fish, the rudd.
  3. (historical) A costermonger's barrow.
    • 1871, Belgravia (volume 14, page 213)
      You might have gone there quite as easily, and enjoyed yourself much more, had your mode of conveyance been the railway, or a hansom, or even a costermonger's shallow.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Usually used in the plural form.

Translations[edit]

See also[edit]

Verb[edit]

shallow (third-person singular simple present shallows, present participle shallowing, simple past and past participle shallowed)

  1. (transitive, intransitive) To make or become less deep.
    • 2009 February 6, Andrew Z. Krug et al., “Signature of the End-Cretaceous Mass Extinction in the Modern Biota”, in Science[2], volume 323, number 5915, DOI:10.1126/science.1164905, pages 767-771:
      The shallowing of Cenozoic age-frequency curves from tropics to poles thus appears to reflect the decreasing probability for genera to reach and remain established in progressively higher latitudes ( 9 ).

Anagrams[edit]