soft

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See also: -soft

English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English softe, from Old English sōfte, alteration of earlier sēfte (soft), from Proto-West Germanic *samftī (level, even, smooth, soft, gentle) (compare *sōmiz (agreeable, fitting)), from Proto-Indo-European *semptio-, *semtio-, from *sem- (one, whole). Cognate with West Frisian sêft (gentle; soft), Dutch zacht (soft), German Low German sacht (soft), German sanft (soft, yielding), Old Norse sœmr (agreeable, fitting), samr (same). More at seem, same.

Adjective[edit]

soft (comparative softer, superlative softest)

  1. Easily giving way under pressure.
    My head sank easily into the soft pillow.
  2. (of cloth or similar material) Smooth and flexible; not rough, rugged, or harsh.
    Polish the silver with a soft cloth to avoid scratching.
    soft silk; a soft skin
  3. (of a sound) Quiet.
    I could hear the soft rustle of the leaves in the trees.
  4. Gentle.
    There was a soft breeze blowing.
  5. Expressing gentleness or tenderness; mild; conciliatory; courteous; kind.
    soft eyes
  6. Gentle in action or motion; easy.
  7. Weak in character; impressible.
    • 1665, Joseph Glanvill, Scepsis Scientifica:
      The deceiver soon found this soft place of Adam's.
  8. Requiring little or no effort; easy.
    • 1892, Robert Louis Stevenson, The Beach of Falesá
      Before that they had been a good deal on the move, trekking about after the white man, who was one of those rolling stones that keep going round after a soft job.
  9. Not bright or intense.
    soft lighting
  10. Having a slight angle from straight.
    At the intersection with two roads going left, take the soft left.
    It's important to dance on soft knees to avoid injury.
  11. (phonetics) Voiced; sonant; lenis.
  12. (phonetics, rare) Voiceless.
  13. (Slavic phonology) Palatalized.
  14. (slang) Lacking strength or resolve; not tough, wimpy.
    • 1932, Delos W. Lovelace, King Kong, published 1965, page 31:
      ‘Going soft on me, Jack?’ ‘You know I’m not.’ ‘Then why all the fuss and blow?’
    • 2010, BioWare, Mass Effect 2 (Science Fiction), Redwood City: Electronic Arts, OCLC 865290061, PC, scene: Prison Ship Purgatory:
      Warden Kuril: Every day I see the worst sapient life has to offer. Governments are soft, unwilling to make the hard choices.
      Warden Kuril: Someone had to stand up and make the galaxy safe.
    When it comes to drinking, he is as soft as they come.
  15. (of water) Low in dissolved calcium compounds.
    You won't need as much soap, as the water here is very soft.
  16. (UK, colloquial) Foolish.
    • 1621, Robert Burton, The Essential Anatomy of Melancholy
      He made soft fellows stark noddies, and such as were foolish quite mad.
  17. (physics) Of a ferromagnetic material; a material that becomes essentially non-magnetic when an external magnetic field is removed, a material with a low magnetic coercivity. (compare hard)
  18. (of a person) Physically or emotionally weak.
  19. Incomplete, or temporary; not a full action.
    The admin imposed a soft ban on the user.
    Messages removed by soft deletion can be recovered if necessary.
  20. (UK, of a man) Effeminate.
    • 1650, Jeremy Taylor, The Rule and Exercises of Holy Living
      A longing after sensual pleasures is a dissolution of the spirit of a man, and makes it loose, soft, and wandering.
  21. Agreeable to the senses.
    a soft liniment
    soft wines
  22. Not harsh or offensive to the sight; not glaring or jagged; pleasing to the eye.
    soft colours
    the soft outline of the snow-covered hill
    • 1673, Edward Browne, A Brief Account of some Travels in Hungaria, Styria, Bulgaria, Thessaly, Austria, Serbia, Carynthia, Carniola, and Friuli
      The sun, shining upon the upper part of the clouds [] made the softest lights imaginable.
  23. (photography, of light) Made up of nonparallel rays, tending to wrap around a subject and produce diffuse shadows.
  24. (computing) Emulated with software; not physically real.
    Press the red button on the soft phone to hang up.
  25. (of a drug) Not likely to cause addiction.
  26. (of a drink) Not containing alcohol.
  27. (finance) Of a market: having more supply than demand; being a buyer's market.
    Antonym: hard
    • 1995, U.S. Housing Market Conditions (page 45)
      Overall the rental market is soft and multifamily permit activity is almost nonexistent.
  28. (of pornography) softcore.
Synonyms[edit]
Antonyms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
See also[edit]

Interjection[edit]

soft

  1. (archaic) Be quiet; hold; stop; not so fast.

Noun[edit]

soft (plural softs)

  1. A soft or foolish person; an idiot.
  2. (motorsports) Ellipsis of soft tyre. (A tyre whose compound is softer than mediums, and harder than supersofts.)
  3. (colloquial) A soft sound or part of a sound.
    • 2012, Sam McGuire, Paul Lee, The Video Editor's Guide to Soundtrack Pro (page 103)
      The expander doesn't really make the louds louder and the softs softer in one step []
  4. (gaming, dated) Video game
    • December 1989, Electronic Gaming Monthly:
      Sega and third-party licensees are set to release an abundance of softs that range from intense shooters to sports to reflex-testers.

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle English softe, from Old English sōfte (softly), from Proto-West Germanic *samftō (softly).

Adverb[edit]

soft (comparative more soft, superlative most soft)

  1. (obsolete) Softly; without roughness or harshness; gently; quietly.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Stanley, Oma (1937), “I. Vowel Sounds in Stressed Syllables”, in The Speech of East Texas (American Speech: Reprints and Monographs; 2), New York: Columbia University Press, DOI:10.7312/stan90028, →ISBN, § 8, page 22.

Czech[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from English soft(ware).

Noun[edit]

soft m

  1. (colloquial) software, program
    • 18 March 1999, CD-R 74min X 80min, Group cz.comp.ibmpc:
      Zajimalo by mne, zda jsou tyto CD schopna pracovat na plnou kapacitu s normalnimi vypalovackami a beznym softem nebo je na ne potreba mit extra vypalovadlo i soft?
    • 19 March 2009, Zalohovaci SW, Group cz.talk:
      Pokud těch dat máte víc, pak tím TARem stačí zálohovat základ systému a zbytek řešit zálohovacím softem, kterej umí dělit archiv na několik pásek.
    • 2 April 2010, gsm modul / telefon, Group cz.comp.linux:
      ma nekdo nejake zkusenosti s takovym zarizenim ci softem kterym to ovladat?

Declension[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • soft in Kartotéka Novočeského lexikálního archivu
  • soft in Slovník spisovného jazyka českého, 1960–1971, 1989

French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from English soft.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

soft m (plural softs)

  1. (sexuality) soft porn
  2. (computing, uncountable) software
  3. (computing, countable) a piece of software

Adjective[edit]

soft (plural softs)

  1. softcore (pornography)

Italian[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Unadapted borrowing from English soft.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

soft (invariable)

  1. soft (tone etc.; temporary (computing))

References[edit]

  1. ^ soft in Luciano Canepari, Dizionario di Pronuncia Italiana (DiPI)

Romanian[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from English software.

Noun[edit]

soft n (plural softuri)

  1. software

Declension[edit]


Swedish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English soft.

Adjective[edit]

soft (comparative softare, superlative softast)

  1. (slang) nice and/or laid-back; chill
    en soft snubbe
    a chill guy
    Det ska bli riktigt soft med några dagar ledigt
    It's gonna be real chill to have a few days off
    Soft att du klarade provet!
    Nice that you passed the test!
    Antonym: osoft

Declension[edit]

Inflection of soft
Indefinite Positive Comparative Superlative2
Common singular soft softare softast
Neuter singular soft softare softast
Plural softa softare softast
Masculine plural3 softe softare softast
Definite Positive Comparative Superlative
Masculine singular1 softe softare softaste
All softa softare softaste
1) Only used, optionally, to refer to things whose natural gender is masculine.
2) The indefinite superlative forms are only used in the predicative.
3) Dated or archaic

Related terms[edit]