Definition of dry adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//draɪ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//draɪ//
    (drier, driest) Texture of food, Other geographic regions, Describing geographic regions, Thirst
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    not wet
  1. 1  not wet, damp or sticky; without water or moisture Is my shirt dry yet? Store onions in a cool dry place. I'm afraid this cake has turned out very dry. Her mouth felt as dry as a bone (= completely dry). When the paint is completely dry, apply another coat. It was high summer and the rivers were dry (= had no water in them). see also bone dry opposite wet See related entries: Texture of food
  2. little rain
  3. 2  with very little rain weeks of hot dry weather the dry season I hope it stays dry for our picnic. Rattlesnakes occur in the warmer, drier parts of North America. See related entries: Other geographic regions, Describing geographic regions
  4. opposite wet
  5. 3without the natural oils that makes it soft and healthy a shampoo for dry hair
  6. cough
  7. 4that does not produce any phlegm (= the thick liquid that forms in the nose and throat) a dry hacking cough
  8. bread
  9. 5eaten on its own without any butter, jam, etc. Breakfast consisted of dry bread and a cup of tea.
  10. wine
  11. 6not sweet a crisp dry white wine a dry sherry This wine is too dry for me.
  12. opposite sweet
  13. 7(approving) very clever and expressed in a quiet way that is not obvious; often using irony He was a man of few words with a delightful dry sense of humour.
  14. without emotion
  15. 8not showing emotion a dry voice
  16. boring
  17. 9not interesting Government reports tend to make dry reading.
  18. without alcohol
  19. 10without alcohol; where it is illegal to buy, sell or drink alcohol We had a dry wedding (= no alcoholic drinks were served). a dry county/state
  20. thirsty
  21. 11(informal, especially British English) thirsty; that makes you thirsty I'm a bit dry. This is dry work. See related entries: Thirst
  22. Word OriginOld English drȳge (adjective), drȳgan (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Middle Low German dröge, Dutch droog, and German trocken.Extra examples He towelled himself dry. Make sure the paint is thoroughly dry. Rinse the mushrooms and pat dry. Ruth felt her mouth go dry. The big corporations are bleeding some of these small countries dry. The day will start bright and mainly dry. The ink was scarcely dry on the agreement before fighting broke out again. The river was bone dry. There is every prospect of the weather remaining dry this week. This type of wound is best kept dry without a dressing. Towel yourself dry before getting dressed. We managed to keep dry by huddling in a doorway. ‘He may not last the night,’ she said in a dry tone. He quickly built up a reputation for his dry wit. He replied in a cold, dry manner. They were conducting a dry debate on science policy. the dry season weeks of hot dry weatherIdioms
    be home and dry (British English) (North American English be home free)
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    to have done something successfully, especially when it was difficult I could see the finish line and thought I was home and dry.
    (disapproving) to take away all somebody’s money The big corporations are bleeding some of these small countries dry.
    1. 1(of a boat, etc.) in a position out of the water Their yacht was left high and dry on a sandbank.
    2. 2in a difficult situation, without help or money More Like This Rhyming pairs in idioms doom and gloom, fair and square, high and dry, huff and puff, name and shame, slice and dice, thrills and spills, wear and tear, wheel and deal, wine and dineSee worksheet.
    (old-fashioned) to remain ready for a possible emergency
    milk/suck somebody/something dry
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    to get from somebody/something all the money, help, information, etc. they have, usually giving nothing in return By earning millions from racing and giving pennies back, the bookmakers are sucking the sport dry.
    not a dry eye in the house
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    (humorous) used to say that everyone was very emotional about something There wasn't a dry eye in the house when they announced their engagement.
    to stop supplying water; to be all used so that none is left The wells in most villages in the region have run dry. Vaccine supplies started to run dry as the flu outbreak reached epidemic proportions. Native resources of scientific talent and ingenuity have not run dry. to get as much money, information, etc. out of somebody as you can
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: dry