- grave, sober, or mirthless, as a person, the face, speech, tone, or mood: solemn remarks.
- gravely or somberly impressive; causing serious thoughts or a grave mood: solemn music.
- serious or earnest: solemn assurances.
- characterized by dignified or serious formality, as proceedings; of a formal or ceremonious character: a solemn occasion.
- made in due legal or other express form, as a declaration or agreement: a solemn oath.
- marked or observed with religious rites; having a religious character: a solemn holy day.
- uttered, prescribed, or made according to religious forms: a solemn ban on sacrifice.
Origin of solemn
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for solemnness
Both me and Sister Hilda-Antony felt there was a strange and awful stillness and solemnness about the place.The Dop Doctor
Clotilde Inez Mary Graves
- characterized or marked by seriousness or sinceritya solemn vow
- characterized by pomp, ceremony, or formality
- serious, glum, or pompous
- inspiring awea solemn occasion
- performed with religious ceremony
- gloomy or sombresolemn colours
Word Origin and History for solemnness
mid-14c., "performed with due religious ceremony or reverence, sacred, devoted to religious observances," also, of a vow, etc., "made under religious sanction, binding," from Old French solempne (12c., Modern French solennel) and directly from Latin sollemnis "annual, established, religiously fixed, formal, ceremonial, traditional," perhaps related to sollus "whole" (see safe (adj.)).
"The explanation that Latin sollemnis was formed from sollus whole + annus year is not considered valid" [Barnhart], but some assimilation via folk-etymology is possible. In Middle English also "famous, important; imposing, grand," hence Chaucer's friar, a ful solempne man. Meaning "marked by seriousness or earnestness" is from late 14c.; sense of "fitted to inspire devout reflection" is from c.1400. Related: Solemnly.