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



BrE BrE//dæmp//
; NAmE NAmE//dæmp//
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  •  (damper, dampest) slightly wet, often in a way that is unpleasant The cottage was cold and damp. It feels damp in here. damp clothes Wipe the surface with a damp cloth. Synonymswetmoist damp soaked drenched saturatedThese words all describe things covered with or full of liquid, especially water.wet covered with or full of liquid, especially water:The car had skidded on the wet road. You’ll get wet (= in the rain) if you go out now.moist slightly wet, often in a way that is pleasant or useful:a lovely rich moist cakedamp slightly wet, often in a way that is unpleasant:The cottage was cold and damp.soaked (rather informal) very wet:You’re soaked through! (= completely wet)drenched very wet:We were caught in the storm and came home drenched to the skin.soaked or drenched?Both of these words can be used with with or in:soaked/​drenched with/​in sweat/​blood. Soaked but not usually drenched can also be used before a noun:their soaked clothes their drenched clothessaturated very wet:The ground is completely saturated: it would be pointless to plant anything.Patterns wet/​moist/​damp/​soaked/​drenched/​saturated with something soaked/​drenched in something somebody’s coat/​shirt/​shoes/​clothes/​hair is/​are wet/​damp/​soaked/​drenched wet/​moist/​damp/​saturated ground/​earth to get wet/​moist/​damp/​soaked/​drenched/​saturated
  • Word OriginMiddle English (in the noun sense ‘noxious inhalation’): of West Germanic origin; related to a Middle Low German word meaning ‘vapour, steam, smoke’.Extra examples Our clothes had got a bit damp. The rain had made the walls damp. The room smelled damp. We took off our damp clothes.Idioms (British English, informal) an event that is disappointing because it is not as exciting or impressive as expected The celebrations were a bit of a damp squib.
    See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: damp