Definition of shallow in English:


Line breaks: shal|low
Pronunciation: /ˈʃaləʊ


1Of little depth: serve the noodles in a shallow bowl being fairly shallow, the water was warm
More example sentences
  • I grow this prehistoric plant in a shallow bowl of water.
  • Plan on shelf space tall enough for large cereal boxes and drawers shallow enough to allow you to easily find small bags and boxes.
  • Meantime, the Russian Navy is trying to pull the sub to shallow waters.
1.1Situated at no great depth: the shallow bed of the North Sea
More example sentences
  • The shallow depths where fertilizer is placed are dry under drought situations, which limits nutrient uptake.
  • Heavy equipment or materials such as pallets of payers can squash a tree's shallow surface roots.
1.2Varying only slightly from a specified or understood line or direction, especially the horizontal: a shallow roof
More example sentences
  • A shallow gabled roof covered with translucent fiberglass shelters the area from rain and drizzle without blocking the light.
  • The hall is shaded by a shallow half-hat of a roof which leaves a crescent-shaped interstice between it and the edge of the big carapace.
  • Arranged in a radial pattern, the stone arches are crowned by a shallow domed roof clad in panels of green pre-patinated copper.
1.3(Of breathing) taking in little air.
More example sentences
  • Jewel's breathing was shallow as she held back tears.
  • Soon, she could hear the shallow breathing of people.
  • His eyes were closed and his breathing was shallow.
2Not exhibiting, requiring, or capable of serious thought: a shallow analysis of contemporary society
More example sentences
  • This is one reason I described his analysis as shallow.
  • Fifth, the book's discussion of the Asian crisis seems shallow compared to its analysis of Japanese capitalism.
  • The errors are patent and they are explicable by what we say is a rather shallow analysis of the admissible value of those utterances in the record of interview.
superficial, facile, glib, simplistic, oversimplified, schematic, slight, flimsy, insubstantial, lightweight, empty, trivial, trifling;
surface, skin-deep;
frivolous, foolish, silly, unintelligent, unthinking, unscholarly, ignorant


(shallows) Back to top  
An area of the sea, a lake, or a river where the water is not very deep.
More example sentences
  • To see for yourself, inspect the shallows at a pond or pool where the water is clear but also sports some vegetation.
  • The trout here also seem to prefer the deep pools during the day and venture out into the shallows only when the sun is off the water.
  • The world of Holodrum is a land filled with season sensitive elements such as spring blooming flowers, snow covered caves as well as summer sapped shallows of water and pits clogged with autumn falling leaves.


[no object] Back to top  
(Of the sea, a lake, or a river) become less deep over time or in a particular place: the boat ground to a halt where the water shallowed
More example sentences
  • Since then, the channel shallowed and the docks silted in.
  • A much larger area at the north end of the lake is approximately 24 m deep, shallowing to the south.
  • The airplane's nose dropped through the horizon and speed started increasing to a bit more than 150 knots, then the nose started climbing and the bank angle shallowed out.


late Middle English: obscurely related to shoal2.



More example sentences
  • We might well have been guilty of thinking too shallowly, of gulping our facts and developing a taste for the bitter; but happy-go-lucky, laissez-faire and carefree is not how I remember it.
  • Planting too deeply will cause collar rot; planting too shallowly will expose the roots.
  • We will win our small victories, but then forget the sacrifices made to achieve them as we bathe our wounds in overly generous civil liberties and a materialistic capitalist balm that only shallowly soothes us.


More example sentences
  • That kind of superficial shallowness went out with the 80's.
  • But imagine a serious 19 th-century novelist writing with comparable levity about an equivalent shallowness!
  • Technical wizardry and brilliant tricks with time can't obscure the shallowness and frivolousness of the question posed.

Definition of shallow in:

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