deafly, adv.deafness, n.
/def/, adj., deafer, deafest, n.
1. partially or wholly lacking or deprived of the sense of hearing; unable to hear.
2. refusing to listen, heed, or be persuaded; unreasonable or unyielding: deaf to all advice.
3. (used with a pl. v.) deaf persons collectively (usually prec. by the).
[bef. 900; ME deef, OE deaf; c. MLG dof, D doof, OHG toub]
Pronunciation. DEAF is usually pronounced /def/, with the vowel of left. In uneducated speech the pronunciation /deef/, to rhyme with leaf, is heard, though it is becoming less common.

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Universalium. 2010.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • deaf — W3 [def] adj [: Old English;] 1.) physically unable to hear anything or unable to hear well →↑hearing impaired ▪ communication between deaf and hearing people ▪ I think Mum s going a bit deaf . ▪ She s deaf and dumb (=unable to hear or speak) and …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Deaf — (d[e^]f or d[=e]f; 277), a. [OE. def, deaf, deef, AS. de[ a]f; akin to D. doof, G. taub, Icel. daufr, Dan. d[ o]v, Sw. d[ o]f, Goth. daubs, and prob. to E. dumb (the original sense being, dull as applied to one of the senses), and perh. to Gr.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • deaf — [ def ] adjective ** not able to hear anything, or not able to hear very well. Many deaf people wear a hearing aid to help them hear. Deaf people often use their hands to communicate in sign language, and many can lip read what other people are… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • deaf — O.E. deaf deaf, also empty, barren, specialized from P.Gmc. *daubaz (Cf. O.S. dof, O.N. daufr, O.Fris. daf, Du. doof deaf, Ger. taub, Goth. daufs deaf, insensate ), from PIE dheubh , which was used to form words meaning confusion, stupefaction,… …   Etymology dictionary

  • deaf — deaf; deaf·en; deaf·en·ing·ly; deaf·ish; deaf·ly; deaf·ness; …   English syllables

  • deaf — ► ADJECTIVE 1) without the faculty of hearing or having impaired hearing. 2) (deaf to) unwilling to listen or respond to. ● fall on deaf ears Cf. ↑fall on deaf ears ● turn a deaf ear Cf. ↑tu …   English terms dictionary

  • deaf — [adj1] without hearing deafened, earless, hard of hearing, stone deaf*, unable to hear; concept 591 Ant. hearing deaf [adj2] unwilling bullheaded*, headstrong, indifferent, intractable, mulish*, oblivious, obstinate, pertinacious, perverse,… …   New thesaurus

  • deaf — [def] adj. [ME def < OE deaf, akin to Ger taub, Goth * daufs < IE * dheubh , misty, obscured < base * dheu : see DULL] 1. totally or partially unable to hear 2. unwilling to hear or listen; giving no heed [deaf to her pleas] deafly adv.… …   English World dictionary

  • Deaf — (?; 277), v. t. To deafen. [Obs.] Dryden. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • deaf|en — «DEHF uhn», transitive verb. 1. to make deaf: »A hard blow on the ear deafened him for life. 2. to stun with noise: »A sudden explosion deafened us for a moment. 3. to drown out by a louder sound. 4. to make soundproof; deaden …   Useful english dictionary

  • deaf — index heedless, incognizant, insensible, insusceptible (uncaring) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

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