having very little or no light: The movie projector works much better in a dark room.
radiating, admitting, or reflecting little light: A worm bin can be started in a 10-gallon plastic container in a dark color.
approaching black in hue: They stained the wood floor a dark brown.
not pale or fair in skin tone: My mother had a dark complexion, but my father's was lighter.
brunette; brown or black: The man is described as 55 to 65 years old, with short gray hair and dark eyebrows.
having brown or black hair: She's dark but her children are blond.
(of food or drink, especially coffee beans) roasted, cooked, or toasted until near black in color: often used to describe the process itself: That brand of coffee is good, but I can't always find the dark roast.
(of coffee) containing only a small amount of milk or cream: We'll have two large coffees—one black, one dark and sweet.
evil; iniquitous; wicked: At the film's climax, the protagonist reveals a dark plot to assassinate the king.
gloomy; cheerless; dismal: He served as a courier for the Polish resistance during the dark days of World War II.
dealing with subject matter that is shocking, disturbing, or grim: This manga is a bit darker than the typical princess novel, as it has some scenes with gore.
sullen; frowning: With a dark expression, he demanded to know what she was doing.
hard to understand; obscure: Among the fragments left us by this poet, many lines are dark in meaning.
destitute of knowledge or culture; unenlightened.
(of a theater) offering no performances; closed: The theaters in this town are dark on Sundays.
(of an l-sound) having back-vowel resonance; situated after a vowel in the same syllable.: Compare clear (def. 24a).
(of a speech sound) of dull quality; acoustically damped.
the absence of light; darkness: I can't see well in the dark.
night; nightfall: Please come home before dark.
a color close to black, or something having such a color: Black and white photography has lots of darks.For best results, wash darks separately from whites.
Archaic. a place that lacks light: Imagine diving into the dark of the sea and seeing a face emerge from the watery shadows.
to make dark; darken: The windows of the car had been darked, making it impossible to see inside.
Obsolete. to grow dark; darken.
Idioms about dark
to stop communicating, transmitting, or broadcasting: Thousands of websites went dark for a day to demonstrate that the bill would ruin the internet as we know it.I've tried to reach out, but he's gone dark and there's no contact.
to shut down or stop operating; close, temporarily or permanently: The area is so depressed that more than half the restaurants in this county have gone dark in the past five years.
in the dark,
in ignorance; uninformed: He was in the dark about their plans for the evening.
in secrecy; concealed; obscure.
keep dark, to keep as a secret; conceal: They kept their political activities dark.
- non·dark, adjective
- pre·dark, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use dark in a sentence
Was it difficult revisiting any of the darker memories, like his infidelity?All Eyes on Anjelica Huston: The Legendary Actress on Love, Abuse, and Jack Nicholson | Alex Suskind | November 10, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
These days, the 36-year-old is lording over a far darker fantasy world.Ben McKenzie’s Journey From Reluctant Teen Idol on ‘The O.C.’ to Sheriff of ‘Gotham’ | Marlow Stern | November 4, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Men with darker skin aren't always welcome in China, and many face routine harassment.Chinese Getting Hooked on the Middle East's Favorite Drug | Brendon Hong | October 20, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
“I knew it was going to require me going to some darker places,” he says.Josh Charles on Life After ‘The Good Wife’ and His Insane Movie ‘Bird People’ | Kevin Fallon | September 13, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Behind this unprecedented gesture, however, darker forces were planning a different sort of event.Nuclear Pakistan's Spies Target India—and Their Own Prime Minister | Bruce Riedel | September 4, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
His hair was darker—almost brown save at the temples, where age had faded it to an ashen colour.St. Martin's Summer | Rafael Sabatini
He made no further remark as they descended the darker section of the stair, and she could think of nothing to say to him.Ancestors | Gertrude Atherton
There was the darker face—and there was Lettice; and each struggled for complete possession of her features.The Wave | Algernon Blackwood
But for sure behind this mystery o' the death o' Sir Lucien there's a darker mystery still; sair dark.Dope | Sax Rohmer
It is tolerably certain that this is a corrupt form of the passage, and only makes the matter darker.Chaucer's Works, Volume 1 (of 7) -- Romaunt of the Rose; Minor Poems | Geoffrey Chaucer
British Dictionary definitions for dark
having little or no light: a dark street
(of complexion, hair colour, etc) not fair or blond; swarthy; brunette
(in combination): dark-eyed
gloomy or dismal
sinister; evil: a dark purpose
sullen or angry: a dark scowl
ignorant or unenlightened: a dark period in our history
secret or mysterious: keep it dark
phonetics denoting an (l) pronounced with a velar articulation giving back vowel resonance. In English, l is usually dark when final or preconsonantal: Compare light 1 (def. 30)
go dark stock exchange informal (of a company) to remove itself from the register of major exchanges while continuing to trade
absence of light; darkness
night or nightfall
a dark place, patch, or shadow
a state of ignorance (esp in the phrase in the dark)
an archaic word for darken
- darkish, adjective
- darkly, adverb
- darkness, noun
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with dark
In addition to the idioms beginning with dark
- darken someone's door
- dark horse
- in the dark
- keep someone in the dark
- leap in the dark
- shot in the dark
- whistle in the dark
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.