smother

[ smuhth-er ]
/ ˈsmʌð ər /

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to become stifled or suffocated; be prevented from breathing.
to be stifled; be suppressed or concealed.

noun


Nearby words

  1. smoothness,
  2. smoothy,
  3. smorgasbord,
  4. smorzando,
  5. smote,
  6. smothered mate,
  7. smothery,
  8. smoulder,
  9. smout,
  10. smp

Origin of smother

1125–75; (noun) Middle English smorther dense smoke; akin to Old English smorian to suffocate; (v.) Middle English smo(r)theren, derivative of the noun

Related forms
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for smother


British Dictionary definitions for smother

smother

/ (ˈsmʌðə) /

verb

noun

Derived Formssmothery, adjective

Word Origin for smother

Old English smorian to suffocate; related to Middle Low German smōren

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 smother

smother

v.

c.1200, "to suffocate with smoke," from smother (n.), earlier smorthre "dense, suffocating smoke" (late 12c.), from stem of Old English smorian "to suffocate, choke, strangle, stifle," cognate with Middle Dutch smoren, German schmoren; possibly connected to smolder. Meaning "to kill by suffocation in any manner" is from 1540s; sense of "to extinguish a fire" is from 1590s. Sense of "stifle, repress" is first recorded 1570s; meaning "to cover thickly (with some substance)" is from 1590s. Related: Smothered; smothering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper