Definition of dryness in US English:



  • 1Absence or lack of moisture or liquid.

    ‘dryness of the mouth may occur while you are taking this medicine’
    ‘hand sanitizers contain ingredients that help prevent skin dryness’
    • ‘The indiscriminate use of the pond water by residents in the area has pushed it to the verge of dryness.’
    • ‘Mild side effects include nasal dryness, nosebleeds and sore throat.’
    • ‘Some people put a dab of petroleum jelly in the nose at night to combat dryness.’
    • ‘Talk to your doctor about using special eyedrops to relieve dryness.’
    • ‘Whatever the source, the wood needs to be stacked and covered to ensure dryness.’
    • ‘The meat was all well-cooked, with not a hint of dryness or over-cooking.’
    • ‘The cacophony of strong flavours failed to hide the dryness of the chicken.’
    • ‘Some antihistamines are more likely to cause dryness of the mouth than others.’
    • ‘Drinking water helps to relieve some of that dryness and the aspirin helps with the pain.’
    • ‘Back in the kitchen I sipped my apple juice, quenching the dryness of my throat.’
    1. 1.1 Lack or absence of rainfall or humidity.
      ‘the searing heat and dryness of the Sahara’
      ‘the sea retreated in periods of prolonged dryness’
      • ‘In addition to this area in southwest Nebraska, abnormal dryness developed across most of the state in June.’
      • ‘We have not had the extended 24 months of dryness like western Nebraska.’
      • ‘The dryness of the region helped explain the fine condition of the textiles, which date from the third century BC.’
      • ‘In summer, the plants will tolerate some dryness but with extreme drought, watering is required.’
      • ‘Pockets of mild dryness continue across extreme southwest Nebraska, as well as the northwestern Panhandle.’
      • ‘The dryness of the ground tells us that there is little rain here.’
      • ‘Man, too, learned how to live in the desert, surviving in spite of the extreme dryness and heat.’
      • ‘Jocelyn gave me a list of plants that cope with dryness.’
      • ‘Hybrid Tea Roses require lots of water during hot weather, especially if the heat is accompanied by dryness.’
      • ‘What is really needed now is a sustained period of dryness to alleviate future flood potential, as well as firm up soils for farm machinery.’
  • 2Lack of interest, excitement, or embellishment; dullness.

    ‘readers are repelled by the dryness of much of the matter’
    ‘it does little to rescue the ordinary moment from dryness and tedium’
    • ‘The minuter corrections, in the Duke de la Valliere's catalogue, furnish a most enlivening article in the dryness of bibliography.’
    • ‘He cut through the seeming dryness of the piece, the old-fashionedness, and made it totally available to a new audience.’
    • ‘McCreesh's scholarship is not in doubt, yet the performance bears no traces of dryness or unwonted caution.’
    • ‘It's good stuff, good enough for those of you afraid of the dryness of documentaries to seek out.’
    • ‘This produces a certain dryness, a reduction of the work to its function as institutional critique.’
    • ‘This book is also highly readable and avoids dryness, despite its scholarly approach - a most enjoyable and thought provoking read.’
    • ‘The lives of Byron and Shelley are an exotic flicker behind the screen, training our frustration on the comparative dryness of this writing.’
    • ‘Their definitions are often very interesting, and perhaps were supposed to create some oasis in the dense dryness of the technical jargon.’
    • ‘He shrewdly defends her prose against the charge of dryness, calling it "as colorless, as odorless, as tasteless, and as intoxicating as vodka."’
    • ‘The counterpoint becomes increasingly intricate as the set progresses, but Frescobaldi never lets the music devolve into academic dryness.’
    1. 2.1 The quality of being unemotional, undemonstrative, or impassive.
      ‘the dryness of his delivery’
      ‘a certain dryness of style’
      • ‘McDiarmid brings a dryness of delivery and impeccable timing to the role while clearly relishing McGibbon's sardonic script.’
      • ‘"Thank you for telling me what you really think, Jake," she said, not without a hint of dryness.’
      • ‘We like Cleese's black humour, his dryness and his sense of the absurd.’
      • ‘His comedic style is marked mostly by self-deprecation, dryness, and yelling.’
      • ‘His books have none of the Gallic virtues of irony, juridical dryness and clarity of prose.’
      • ‘"I'm busy" she said, with a dryness in her voice that reminded me of Brook.’
      • ‘He brings to this story all his wit and dryness and power of mind.’
      • ‘Overall, the book is remarkably readable, partly because the editors have wisely allowed a certain quirky dryness of tone to creep in.’
  • 3The quality in an alcoholic drink of not being sweet.

    ‘there's a lovely dryness to this straw-colored wine’
    • ‘It is the mix of yeasts in and around the winery that have the potential to ferment a wine to dryness.’
    • ‘I can be aware that the wine is dry (someone told me it was or I read the label) without tasting the wine or its dryness.’
    • ‘The wine has a fresh, crisp, tart dryness that serves almost as a surface coating through which one can perceive the underlying fruit of the Chardonnay grape.’
    • ‘At Passover seders, traditionalists who favor sweet kosher wine and modernists who prefer dryness can share this 2006 late-harvest chenin blanc.’
    • ‘When it comes to whites, non-Euro wines tend to lack the dryness and delicate bouquet of the Europeans.’
    • ‘The Alsace growers ferment their wines to complete dryness.’
    • ‘Riesling's customary aroma and flavor of peaches and apricots come and go in a lively interplay of sweetness and dryness.’
    • ‘For starters, sake comes in varying degrees of dryness and sweetness.’
    • ‘Citrus fruit and hop bitterness hits the flavour with a bitter dryness and light finish.’
    • ‘In a white wine I really want dryness and with the Italian there is always an undertone of sweetness.’