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[pruh-found] /prəˈfaʊnd/
adjective, profounder, profoundest.
penetrating or entering deeply into subjects of thought or knowledge; having deep insight or understanding:
a profound thinker.
originating in or penetrating to the depths of one's being; profound grief.
being or going far beneath what is superficial, external, or obvious:
profound insight.
of deep meaning; of great and broadly inclusive significance:
a profound book.
pervasive or intense; thorough; complete:
a profound silence.
extending, situated, or originating far down, or far beneath the surface:
the profound depths of the ocean.
a profound bow.
noun, Literary.
something that is profound.
the deep sea; ocean.
depth; abyss.
Origin of profound
1275-1325; Middle English < Anglo-French < Latin profundus deep, vast, equivalent to pro- pro-1 + fundus bottom (see found2)
Related forms
profoundly, adverb
profoundness, noun
unprofound, adjective
unprofoundly, adverb
1. deep, sagacious.
1. shallow, superficial. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for profoundness
Historical Examples
  • As they drew near the Point, they were struck with the profoundness of its quiet.

    Murder Point

    Coningsby Dawson
  • I declare, the profoundness, the ingeniousness, and the boldness of your successful answers filled me with amazement!

    Solaris Farm

    Milan C. Edson
  • profoundness in their apprehension and glorifying of everyday things (fire, agriculture).

    We Philologists, Volume 8 (of 18) Friedrich Nietzsche
  • His view only differs from the summary before us in the power of its eloquence and the profoundness of its psychologic insight.

    The Expositor's Bible F. W. Farrar
  • We may acquire languages; we may devote ourselves to arts; we may give ourselves up to the profoundness of science.

    Thoughts on Man William Godwin
  • Looking back, one is indeed tempted to forget the profoundness of the philosopher, in recollection of the loveableness of the man.

    Darwin and Modern Science A.C. Seward and Others
  • They all treat of the praise of the Right Path, but, owing to their profoundness, are hard to understand.'

    The Gtakaml rya Sra
  • A thinner skin permits to the touch of woman, more vivacity, delicacy, and profoundness.

    Beauty Alexander Walker
  • As natural sleep has different degrees of profoundness, so has trance sleep.

  • In patristic study he may have stood beneath Luther; in originality and profoundness of thought he was certainly inferior to More.

British Dictionary definitions for profoundness


penetrating deeply into subjects or ideas: a profound mind
showing or requiring great knowledge or understanding: a profound treatise
situated at or extending to a great depth
reaching to or stemming from the depths of one's nature: profound regret
intense or absolute: profound silence
thoroughgoing; extensive: profound changes
(archaic or literary) a great depth; abyss
Derived Forms
profoundly, adverb
profoundness, profundity (prəˈfʌndɪtɪ) noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French profund, from Latin profundus deep, from pro-1 + fundus bottom
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 profoundness



c.1300, "characterized by intellectual depth," from Old French profund (12c., Modern French profond), from Latin profundus "deep, bottomless, vast," also "obscure; profound; immoderate," from pro- "forth" (see pro-) + fundus "bottom" (see fund (n.)). The literal and figurative senses both were in Latin, but English, having already deep, employed this word primarily in its figurative sense. Related: Profoundly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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