1. soothing, soft, or sweet.
  2. true or real.

Origin of sooth

before 900; Middle English; Old English sōth; cognate with Old Saxon sōth, Old Norse sannr, Gothic sunjis true, Sanskrit sat, sant true, real; akin to is
Related formssooth·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for sooth

Contemporary Examples of sooth

Historical Examples of sooth

  • In sooth, I would yet do it, if he would make it up with the housewife.

    The Armourer's Prentices

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • I would come with you, but sooth to say I am stationed here and may not move.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • In sooth, it is bad for those who fall, but worse for those who bide behind.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • Tell me, comrade, is it sooth that we shall have another fling at these Frenchmen?

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • Elkanah was unable to conciliate Peninnah, or to sooth Hannah.

British Dictionary definitions for sooth


  1. truth or reality (esp in the phrase in sooth)
  1. true or real
  2. smooth
Derived Formssoothly, adverb

Word Origin for sooth

Old English sōth; related to Old Norse sathr true, Old High German sand, Gothic sunja truth, Latin sōns guilty, sonticus critical
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 sooth

Old English soð "truth, justice, righteousness, rectitude; reality, certainty," noun use of soð (adj.) "true, genuine, real; just, righteous," originally *sonð-, from Proto-Germanic *santhaz (cf. Old Norse sannr, Old Saxon soth, Old High German sand "true," Gothic sunja "truth").

The group is related to Old English synn "sin" and Latin sontis "guilty" (truth is related to guilt via "being the one;" see sin (v.)), from PIE *es-ont- "being, existence," thus "real, true," from present participle of root *es-, the s-form of the verb "to be" (see be), preserved in Latin sunt "they are" and German sind. Archaic in English, it is the root of modern words for "true" in Swedish (sann) and Danish (sand). In common use until mid-17c., then obsolete until revived as an archaism early 19c. by Scott, etc. Used for Latin pro- in translating compounds into Old English, e.g. soðtacen "prodigy," soðfylgan "prosequi."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper