from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Deeply earnest, serious, and sober.
  • adj. Somberly or gravely impressive. See Synonyms at serious.
  • adj. Performed with full ceremony: a solemn High Mass.
  • adj. Invoking the force of religion; sacred: a solemn vow.
  • adj. Gloomy; somber.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Deeply serious and somber.
  • adj. Somberly impressive.
  • adj. Performed with great ceremony.
  • adj. Sacred.
  • adj. Gloomy or sombre.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Marked with religious rites and pomps; enjoined by, or connected with, religion; sacred.
  • adj. Pertaining to a festival; festive; festal.
  • adj. Stately; ceremonious; grand.
  • adj. Fitted to awaken or express serious reflections; marked by seriousness; serious; grave; devout.
  • adj. Real; earnest; downright.
  • adj. Affectedly grave or serious.
  • adj. Made in form; ceremonious; ; conforming with all legal requirements.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Recurring yearly; annual.
  • Marked by religious rites or ceremonious observances; connected with religion; sacred; also, marked by special ritual or ceremony.
  • Pertaining to holiday; festive; joyous.
  • Of high repute; important; dignified.
  • Fitted to excite or express serious or devout reflections; grave; impressive; awe-inspiring: as, a solemn pile of buildings.
  • Marked by seriousness or earnestness in language or demeanor; impressive; grave: as, to make a solemn promise; a solemn utterance.
  • Affectedly grave, serious, or important: as, to put on a solemn face.
  • Accompanied with all due forms or ceremonies; made in form; formal; regular: now chiefly a law term: as, probate in solemn form.
  • Sober; gloomy; dark: noting color or tint.
  • Synonyms August, venerable, grand, stately.
  • Serious, etc. (see grave), reverential, sober.
  • To solemnize.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. characterized by a firm and humorless belief in the validity of your opinions
  • adj. dignified and somber in manner or character and committed to keeping promises


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English solemne, from Old French, from Latin sollemnis, established, customary; see sol- in Indo-European roots.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English solemne, from Old French solempne, from Late Latin sōlennis and sōlempnis, from Latin sōlemnis, from sollemnis ("ritual; festive, solemn, customary, celebrated at a fixed date"), from sollus ("entire").


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  • His expression solemn, he pulled the strip of plaid from behind his shoulder and draped the end over their joined hands.


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  • "That's what I call a solemn promise," exclaimed Tom, as Nanny concluded the prescribed speech.

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  • She even laid aside her usual quiet undemonstrativeness, and petted and made much of me, though she laughed a little at what she called my solemn face.

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  • On Monday, the Family Leader released a response by Mr. Gingrich, who gave what he called a solemn vow "to defend and strengthen the family."

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  • "You win," he said in solemn ecstasy, and passed his arms around her.



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