[ sawft, soft ]
/ sɔft, sɒft /
adjective, soft·er, soft·est.
yielding readily to touch or pressure; easily penetrated, divided, or changed in shape; not hard or stiff: a soft pillow.
relatively deficient in hardness, as metal or wood.
smooth and agreeable to the touch; not rough or coarse: a soft fabric; soft skin.
producing agreeable sensations; pleasant or comfortable: soft slumber.
low or subdued in sound; gentle and melodious: soft music; a soft voice.
not harsh or unpleasant to the eye; not glaring: soft light; a soft color.
not hard or sharp: soft outlines.
gentle or mild: soft breezes.
genial or balmy, as climate or air.
gentle, mild, warm-hearted, or compassionate: a soft, grandmotherly woman.
smooth, soothing, or ingratiating: soft words.
not harsh or severe, as a penalty or demand.
responsive or sympathetic to the feelings, emotions, needs, etc., of others; tender-hearted.
sentimental or flowery, as language: soft, meaningless talk.
not strong or robust; delicate; incapable of great endurance or exertion: He was too soft for the Marines.
Informal. easy; involving little effort; not difficult, laborious, trying, or severe: a soft job.
Informal. easily influenced or swayed; easily imposed upon; impressionable.
lenient, permissive, or conciliatory, especially regarding something that is conceived of as dangerous or threatening: to be soft on Communism.
(of water) relatively free from mineral salts that interfere with the action of soap.
(of paper money or a monetary system) not supported by sufficient gold reserves or not easily convertible into a foreign currency.
(of a market, market condition, or prices) declining in value, volume, profitability, etc.; weak: a soft tourist season.Compare firm1(def 7).
(of money) plentiful or available at low interest rates or on easy terms: a soft loan.
- (of a metal) easily magnetized and demagnetized.
- (of solder) fusing readily.
- (of a metal or alloy) fully annealed, so as to provide minimum mechanical hardness.
- (of a photographic image) having delicate gradations of tone.
- (of a focus) lacking in sharpness.
- (of a lens) unable to be focused sharply.
- (of consonants) lenis, especially lenis and voiced.
- (of c and g) pronounced as in cent and gem.
- (of consonants in Slavic languages) palatalized.Compare hard(def 38).
Military. (of a missile-launching base) aboveground and relatively unprotected from enemy attack.
Aerospace. (of a landing of a space vehicle) gentle; not harmful to the vehicle or its contents: a soft landing on the moon.
Physics. (of a beam of particles or electromagnetic radiation) having relatively low energy: soft x-rays.Compare hard(def 40).
(of a delegate, voter, etc.) not committed to any one candidate.
foolish or stupid: soft in the head.
(of a detergent) readily biodegradable.
something that is soft or yielding; the soft part.
in a soft manner.
be quiet! hush!
not so fast! stop!
Blech! Words So Gross They’ll Make You SickRead more in this article about some frequently asked questions and fun facts related to our definitions.
be soft on someone, Informal. to be amorously inclined toward a person; have an affection for: He's been soft on her for years.
Origin of soft
before 1000; Middle English softe yielding, gentle, mild, Old English sōfte agreeable; cognate with German sanft
soft·ly, adverbsoft·ness, nouno·ver·soft, adjectiveo·ver·soft·ly, adverb
o·ver·soft·ness, nounsu·per·soft, adjectiveul·tra·soft, adjectiveul·tra·soft·ly, adverbul·tra·soft·ness, nounun·soft, adjectiveun·soft·ly, adverbun·soft·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for softs
This world has more hards than softs for the average mortal and I never flattered myself on bein' above the average.Thankful's Inheritance|Joseph C. Lincoln
British Dictionary definitions for softs (1 of 2)
/ (sɒfts) /
another name for soft commodities
British Dictionary definitions for softs (2 of 2)
/ (sɒft) /
easy to dent, work, or cut without shattering; malleable
not hard; giving little or no resistance to pressure or weight
fine, light, smooth, or fluffy to the touch
(of music, sounds, etc) low and pleasing
(of light, colour, etc) not excessively bright or harsh
(of a breeze, climate, etc) temperate, mild, or pleasant
dialect drizzly or rainya soft day; the weather has turned soft
slightly blurred; not sharply outlinedsoft focus
(of a diet) consisting of easily digestible foods
kind or lenient, often excessively so
easy to influence or impose upon
prepared to compromise; not doctrinairethe soft left
informal feeble or silly; simple (often in the phrase soft in the head)
unable to endure hardship, esp through too much pampering
physically out of condition; flabbysoft muscles
loving; tendersoft words
informal requiring little exertion; easya soft job
chem (of water) relatively free of mineral salts and therefore easily able to make soap lather
(of a drug such as cannabis) nonaddictive or only mildly addictiveCompare hard (def. 19)
(of news coverage) concentrating on trivial stories or those with human interest
- an older word for lenis
- (not in technical usage) denoting the consonants c and g in English when they are pronounced as palatal or alveolar fricatives or affricates (s, / dʒ /, / ʃ /, / ð /, / tʃ /) before e and i, rather than as velar stops (k, g)
- (in the Slavonic languages) palatalized before a front vowel or a special character (soft sign) written as Ь
- unprotected against attacka soft target
- military unarmoured, esp as applied to a truck by comparison with a tank
finance, mainly US (of prices, a market, etc) unstable and tending to decline
(of a currency) in relatively little demand, esp because of a weak balance of payments situation
(of radiation, such as X-rays and ultraviolet radiation) having low energy and not capable of deep penetration of materials
physics (of valves or tubes) only partially evacuated
related to the performance of non-specific, undefinable taskssoft skills such as customer services and office support
soft on or soft about
- gentle, sympathetic, or lenient towards
- feeling affection or infatuation for
in a soft mannerto speak soft
a soft object, part, or piece
informal See softie
Derived Formssoftly, adverb
Word Origin for soft
Old English sōfte; related to Old Saxon sāfti, Old High German semfti gentle
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
Idioms and Phrases with softs
In addition to the idioms beginning with soft
- soften up
- soft in the head
- soft job
- soft on
- soft pedal
- soft sell
- soft soap
- soft spot
- soft touch
- hard (soft) sell
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.