Definition of dense in English:

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Pronunciation: /dens/


1Closely compacted in substance: dense volcanic rock swirling, dense smoke
More example sentences
  • Then it's sent to a bale press, which compresses loose cotton into compact, dense bales.
  • Rugosa roses make up a dense, compact hedge at the end of the garden without distracting from the sea view.
  • The long DNA chain is naturally compacted in a dense form in most biological systems.
thick, heavy, opaque, soupy, murky, smoggy;
concentrated, condensed
1.1Having the constituent parts crowded closely together: an estuary dense with marine life
More example sentences
  • It was slow work, for the trees were close, and in places dense with the bare vines and stalks of undergrowth.
  • The very words ‘fruit cake’ suggest a heavy, rich and wintry confection, dense with dried fruits and redolent of brandy.
  • Then you go back to work and suddenly the day is so dense with activity you feel as if you've done three or four days' worth of mindless tearing around in a few hours.
thick, close-packed, tightly packed, closely set, close-set, crowded, crammed, compact, solid, tight;
overgrown, jungly, impenetrable, impassable
2 informal (Of a person) stupid.
Example sentences
  • The American agent looked at Logan as if he were a math teacher trying to explain a simple problem to a dense student.
  • After thinking about it for a while, the rather dense teacher said, ‘yes’.
  • Even a relatively dense dad like myself could sense that something was wrong.
stupid, unintelligent, ignorant, brainless, mindless, foolish, slow, witless, simpleminded, empty-headed, vacuous, vapid, idiotic, imbecilic
informal thick, dim, moronic, dumb, dopey, dozy, wooden-headed, lamebrained, birdbrained, pea-brained
3(Of a text) hard to understand because of complexity of ideas.
Example sentences
  • Once you've got past the first layer of the menu system, which uses a screen full of icons, the subsequent menus are dense lists of text.
  • I love the Mahabharata: it's one of the most complex, meaning dense documents ever written.
  • With 650 pages packed with dense text, this is obviously designed for the Christmas market.



Pronunciation: /ˈdensnəs/
Example sentences
  • The denseness of imagery often works against sense and clarity.
  • Due to the size and denseness of Hong Kong, there really is no reason for many residents to own cars.
  • One hand pressed across my mouth while the other snapped like a vice around my waist dragging me back into the shadowy denseness of the forest.


Late Middle English: from Latin densus.

Words that rhyme with dense

cense, commence, common sense, condense, dispense, expense, fence, hence, Hortense, immense, offence (US offense), pence, prepense, pretence (US pretense), sense, spence, suspense, tense, thence, whence

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: dense

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