Definition of profound in English:

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Pronunciation: /prəˈfound/

adjective (profounder, profoundest)

1(Of a state, quality, or emotion) very great or intense: profound social changes profound feelings of disquiet
More example sentences
  • For these women and for hundreds of other men and women who have experienced tremendous loss, the past year has piled myriad emotions on top of profound sadness.
  • Then she was lying in bed at night trying to come to terms with this new and unwelcome emotion: profound sadness.
  • There is a profound fear of empowering consumers to share media in a self-organizing way on a mass scale.
heartfelt, intense, keen, great, extreme, acute, severe, sincere, earnest, deep, deep-seated, overpowering, overwhelming, fervent, ardent
far-reaching, radical, extensive, sweeping, exhaustive, thoroughgoing
1.1(Of a disease or disability) very severe; deep-seated: a case of profound liver failure
More example sentences
  • In sum, Singer calls for a radical reassessment of what to do with children born with severe and profound disabilities.
  • He suffered permanent brain damage and profound disability.
  • He developed exchange transfusion for the management of pregnant women with profound anaemia and cardiac failure.
2(Of a person or statement) having or showing great knowledge or insight: a profound philosopher
More example sentences
  • One thing that keeps people in the cycle of rumination is a sense that they're incredibly profound and gaining tremendous insight.
  • You have someone who was illiterate making profound pronouncements and statements which are amazingly accurate about scientific nature.
  • Chief Seattle's reply has been described as the most beautiful and profound statement on the environment ever made.
rare sapient
2.1(Of a subject or thought) demanding deep study or thought: expressing profound truths in simple language
More example sentences
  • This is very difficult as there are many more intelligent people who have had many more profound thoughts on the subject than I have.
  • Appearing on the second tablet, laws six through ten can be understood as teaching a profound idea if we study them in reverse order, from bottom to top.
  • Therefore there is time to think deep, profound thoughts.
complex, abstract, deep, weighty, difficult, abstruse, recondite, esoteric
3 archaic At, from, or extending to a great depth; very deep: he opened the door with a profound bow


(the profound) literary
The vast depth of the ocean or of the mind.



Pronunciation: /prəˈfoun(d)nəs/
Example sentences
  • You can appreciate and understand its profoundness only by visiting it once.
  • The sea unquestionably remains a place of endless mystery and fascination, as it has been since the first humans stood on its shore and tried to grasp its profoundness.
  • I nod in affirmation, holding my breath, expecting the world to wobble off of its axis for a second because of the profoundness of what I have just admitted.


Middle English: from Old French profund, from Latin profundus 'deep', from pro 'before' + fundus 'bottom'. The word was used earliest in the sense 'showing deep insight'.

  • found from Middle English:

    The word found ‘establish’ goes back to Latin fundare ‘to lay a base for’, from fundus ‘bottom, base’, source also of foundation (Late Middle English), founder (Middle English) ‘sink’, and fund (mid 17th century) from a secondary sense of fundus ‘landed property’; and profound (Middle English) ‘deep’. Found ‘melt and mould’ is from French fondre (source of the melted cheese fondue (late 19th century)), from Latin fundere ‘melt, pour’ (found also in fuse (late 16th century)), and dates from the early 16th century.

Words that rhyme with profound

abound, aground, around, astound, bound, compound, confound, dumbfound, expound, found, ground, hound, impound, interwound, mound, pound, propound, redound, round, sound, stoneground, surround, theatre-in-the-round (US theater-in-the-round), underground, wound

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pro·found

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