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[ar-id] /ˈær ɪd/
being without moisture; extremely dry; parched: arid land;
an arid climate.
barren or unproductive because of lack of moisture:
arid farmland.
lacking interest or imaginativeness; sterile; jejune:
an arid treatment of an exciting topic.
Origin of arid
1645-55; (< F) < Latin āridus, equivalent to ār(ēre) to be dry + -idus -id4; cf. ash1
Related forms
[uh-rid-i-tee] /əˈrɪd ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
aridness, noun
aridly, adverb
hyperarid, adjective
Synonym Study
1. See dry. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for aridity
Historical Examples
  • We had an uncomfortable experience because of the excessive heat and aridity.

    A Canyon Voyage Frederick S. Dellenbaugh
  • That common thinness and aridity, too, of the Unitarian temper had weighed with him.

    Robert Elsmere Mrs. Humphry Ward
  • There is aridity, there is wildness, and yet there is a certain monotony.

    The Sea Jules Michelet
  • It is aridity, too, that gives their particular character to the Argentine Andes.

    The Argentine Republic

    Pierre Denis
  • That great craving for cold and wet is a sign of the heat and aridity that is within.

  • But usually it is merely the problem of aridity; which is only a challenge to enterprise.

    The Challenge of the Country George Walter Fiske
  • He might have learnt from his own experience the aridity of a life which is barren of love.

    Robert Browning Edward Dowden
  • The aridity of the hills of Sérignan is unfavourable to them.

  • That common thinness and aridity too of the Unitarian temper had weighed with him.

    Robert Elsmere Mrs. Humphry Ward
  • Except for its aridity, the climate is kind to the small farmer: there is no long inactivity forced upon him by a cold winter.

British Dictionary definitions for aridity


having little or no rain; dry; parched with heat
devoid of interest
Derived Forms
aridity (əˈrɪdɪtɪ), aridness, noun
aridly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Latin āridus, from ārēre to be dry
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for aridity

1590s, from Middle French aridité or directly from Latin ariditatem (nominative ariditas) "dryness," from aridus (see arid). The Latin word was used figuratively of unadorned styles as well as stingy men.



1650s, "dry, parched," from French aride (15c.) or directly from Latin aridus "dry, arid, parched," from arere "to be dry," from PIE root *as- "to burn, glow" (see ash (n.1)). Figurative sense of "uninteresting" is from 1827. Related: Aridly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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aridity in Science
Very dry, especially having less precipitation than is needed to support most trees or woody plants. Deserts have arid climates.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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