Definition of slumber in English:



[NO OBJECT]literary
  • Sleep.

    ‘Sleeping Beauty slumbered in her forest castle’
    figurative ‘the village street slumbered under the afternoon sun’
    • ‘He walked along the moonlit paths in silence, observing in silence the tents and makeshift buildings that housed the slumbering villagers.’
    • ‘Eventually she cried herself to sleep again and he held her as she slumbered, the evenness and peacefulness of her breathing seeming to keep his own mind and heart from fear and despair and sorrow.’
    • ‘She had no intention of actually slumbering, just in case she talked in her sleep.’
    • ‘The dream faded away as Zack slept on, smiling as he hugged a slumbering Curtis tighter.’
    • ‘I was there approximately two weeks ago before he went into what I call a sleep, slumber, and was able to talk with him and hug him and kiss him and joke with him.’
    • ‘How peacefully she slumbered, wrapped in sleep's numbing embrace.’
    • ‘As we made camp well into our fourth night on the road, I curled up into a little ball, pretending to sleep until I was sure all the others were slumbering.’
    • ‘They will moor where the original protagonists moored, sleep in the boat where the original characters slumbered, and stay in some of the same pubs and guest-houses.’
    • ‘She drifted back down to sleep, the warmth felt like slumber.’
    • ‘So to the ones who have passed on, rest there, sleep there, slumber on.’
    • ‘Looking to the couch she saw Brandon sleeping, one arm slung protectively across a slumbering Danielle.’
    • ‘I looked across the fields towards the slumbering village.’
    • ‘She relived her experience in her sleep every time she dared to slumber, and her nights were becoming progressively worse.’
    • ‘I want to sleep next to you, so that in slumber I will be holding you and keeping you safe, so that you will never be afraid again.’
    • ‘To the descendants of Russell, sleep and slumber there.’
    • ‘I tried sleeping on the sofa but my grandma led me to the master bedroom and bid me sleep on the bed beside my slumbering grandfather, who was on a mat.’
    sleep, be asleep, doze, rest, take a siesta, nap, take a nap, catnap, drowse
    sleep like a log, sleep like a top
    snooze, snatch forty winks, get some shut-eye, be in the land of nod
    kip, have a kip, get one's head down, zizz, get some zizz
    catch some zs
    be in the arms of morpheus
    View synonyms


  • A sleep.

    ‘scaring folk from their slumbers’
    • ‘What's the key to surviving those long, lonely Arctic slumbers?’
    • ‘Last week the householders in two estates were roused from their slumbers prior to 7 am by workmen who were asking people to move their cars.’
    • ‘But when it emerges from its slumbers, it is likely to change the rest of your life.’
    • ‘If you figure it's time the sleeping giant resumed his slumbers, Kerry's your man.’
    • ‘Driediger, worried the honks were interrupting the man's slumbers, went to speak with him.’
    • ‘In his day, it was not unusual to find the likes of Elgar, Kipling, Lloyd George and a couple of Rockefellers gathered round the breakfast table, having been roused rudely from their slumbers by a bagpiper.’
    • ‘Despite her scepticism, she has nonetheless banished me to the camp-cot in the study so that my nocturnal hacking and spluttering won't interfere with her slumbers.’
    • ‘Yet two minutes into the game he was racing down from his seat in the directors' box to the touchline where, in typical vein-bulging fashion, he frantically tried to shake his players out of their slumbers.’
    • ‘Uniquely, sadly, we British love to knock our young artists and, not surprisingly, the tabloids have had a field day as the tired voices of reaction have crawled from their slumbers to pronounce the fire a judgment on false gods.’
    • ‘I think I preferred it when all you could hear in the stadium were the gentle slumbers of the England fans, interspersed with the occasional oppositional song about the IRA.’
    • ‘Just when it seemed that the game was slipping away from them, Johnstown roused themselves from their slumbers.’
    • ‘But the latest fire should serve as yet another wake-up call to the authorities, who appear to have returned to their slumbers since the last fire.’
    • ‘When I was very young - about 6 or 7 years old - I had this sequence of dreams that kept repeating in my sleepy slumbers.’
    • ‘And what kind of sleep do you get when you've hit the snooze alarm and faded back to slumbers?’
    • ‘When you disturb them by opening the door, they open one eye in a ‘sod off, no way am I leaping and shrieking for the likes of you’ sort of way, and then return to their slumbers.’
    • ‘I am finally forced from my slumbers at a ridiculously early hour when the overwhelming need to take on fresh water and air becomes strong enough to overcome alcohol-induced inertia.’
    • ‘When Gerry Danagher retired teacher of Skreen awoke from his slumbers one morning a few weeks back he thought he was in a time warp.’
    • ‘Luckily, he fell towards the house and was able to rouse the unsuspecting mate from his slumbers by head-butting the wall with his helmet.’
    • ‘The Luddite in me has been stirred from his distant slumbers by this recent death, too.’
    • ‘That is, by the time punters have awoken from their slumbers ready to meet yet another day in paradise, the sun is high in the sky and the early birds are already lining up tomorrow's worms.’
    sleep, nap, doze, rest, siesta, drowse, catnap
    beauty sleep
    snooze, forty winks, a bit of shut-eye
    kip, zizz
    View synonyms


Middle English: alteration of Scots and northern English sloom, in the same sense. The -b- was added for ease of pronunciation.