Origin of somnolent

1425–75; late Middle English sompnolent < Old French < Latin somnolentus, derivative of somnus sleep; see -ulent
Related formssom·no·lence, som·no·len·cy, nounsom·no·lent·ly, adverbhy·per·som·no·lence, nounhy·per·som·no·lent, adjectivehy·per·som·no·lent·ly, adverbsem·i·som·no·lence, nounsem·i·som·no·lent, adjectivesem·i·som·no·lent·ly, adverbun·som·no·lent, adjectiveun·som·no·lent·ly, adverb

Synonyms for somnolent Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for semi-somnolent

Historical Examples of semi-somnolent

  • Some of the time, indeed, I was in a semi-somnolent state, caused by weakness.

    In New Granada

    W.H.G. Kingston

  • At the edge of the clearing a solitary Maori sentry, a man armed with a revolver, sat, keeping a semi-somnolent guard.

  • Reason regained that supreme control which the semi-somnolent state had taken away.

  • By degrees my semi-somnolent faculties reasserted themselves and I remembered where I was.

    Mr. Marx's Secret

    E. Phillips Oppenheim

  • I think this semi-somnolent attitude is not always the mere attitude of repose.

    Stanley in Africa

    James P. Boyd

British Dictionary definitions for semi-somnolent


  1. drowsy; sleepy
  2. causing drowsiness
Derived Formssomnolence or somnolency, nounsomnolently, adverb

Word Origin for somnolent

C15: from Latin somnus sleep
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

Word Origin and History for semi-somnolent



mid-15c., sompnolent, from Old French sompnolent (Modern French somnolent) or directly from Latin somnolentus "sleepy, drowsy," from somnus "sleep" (see Somnus). Respelled 17c. on Latin model.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

semi-somnolent in Medicine


  1. Drowsy; sleepy.
  2. Inducing or tending to induce sleep; soporific.
  3. In a condition of incomplete sleep; semicomatose.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.