Definition of solemn in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsäləm/


1Formal and dignified: a solemn procession
More example sentences
  • It's a solemn, formal occasion witnessed with pride by family and friends.
  • The funeral procession was solemn but lofty, as befit the prince.
  • We went then from the cold church in solemn procession, singing litanies into the thin air.
1.1Not cheerful or smiling; serious: Tim looked very solemn
More example sentences
  • The painter's face assumed a serious, almost solemn expression.
  • When you go into a courtroom you are doing something very serious and solemn and you are representing more than just the rights of your client.
  • His brown eyes were serious and solemn as he watched her.
1.2Characterized by deep sincerity: he swore a solemn oath to keep faith
More example sentences
  • And, beyond logistics, Carlton was a public servant, bound by a solemn sworn duty to uphold the law.
  • After marrying Romola he wounds her deepest feelings by betraying her father's solemn trust.
  • Her voice grew serious and I could tell her face was taking on the unfamiliarity of really being solemn and genuine about something.
sincere, earnest, honest, genuine, firm, heartfelt, wholehearted, sworn



Example sentences
  • Obviously, rituals imparted significance, not only the meaning and message of the ritual but also in the enforcement of ceremonial aspects of secret fraternalism - the solemnness, responsibility, secrecy, and exclusiveness.
  • ‘So it is you, Gyric,’ replied the monk, regarding Gyric with great solemnness.
  • The 25 performers, including six musicians playing live on stage, explore their physical limits in flowing movements expressing the mysteries and solemnness of the cycle of nature.


Middle English (in the sense 'associated with religious rites'): from Old French solemne, from Latin sollemnis 'customary, celebrated at a fixed date', from sollus 'entire'.

Words that rhyme with solemn

column, olm

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: sol·emn

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