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dry (adj.)

Middle English drie "without moisture, comparatively free from water or fluid," from Old English dryge, from Proto-Germanic *draugiz (source also of Middle Low German dröge, Middle Dutch druge, Dutch droog, Old High German trucchon, German trocken, Old Norse draugr), from Germanic root *dreug- "dry."

Meaning "barren" is mid-14c. Of persons, "showing no emotion," c. 1200; of humor or jests, "without show of pleasantry, caustic, sarcastic" early 15c. (implied in dryly). Sense of "uninteresting, tedious" is from 1620s. Of wines, brandy, etc., "free from sweetness or fruity flavor," 1700. Of places prohibiting alcoholic drink, 1870 (dry feast, one at which no liquor is served, is from late 15c.); colloquial dry (n.) "prohibitionist" is by 1888, American English political slang.

Dry goods (1650s) were those dispensed in dry, not liquid, measure. Dry land (that not under the sea) is from early 13c. Dry-nurse "nurse who attends and feeds a child but does not suckle it" is from 1590s. Dry run "rehearsal" is by 1941. Dry ice "solid carbon dioxide" is by 1925.

dry (v.)

Middle English drien, from Old English drygan, "make dry, free from water or moisture of any kind," also intransitive, "lose moisture," cognate with Dutch droogen, Low German drügen, from the source of dry (adj.). Related: Dried; drying. Of liquids, "to evaporate," early 14c. Meaning "to wipe (dishes, etc.) dry after washing up" is by 1935. Dry out in the drug addiction sense is from 1967. Dry up "stop talking" is by 1853.

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Definitions of dry from WordNet
1
dry (adj.)
opposed to or prohibiting the production and sale of alcoholic beverages;
a dry state
the dry vote led by preachers and bootleggers
dry (adj.)
free from liquid or moisture; lacking natural or normal moisture or depleted of water; or no longer wet;
dry land
dry clothes
a dry climate
the paint is dry
a dry river bed
dry splintery boards
dry (adj.)
humorously sarcastic or mocking;
dry humor
Synonyms: ironic / ironical / wry
dry (adj.)
lacking moisture or volatile components;
dry paint
dry (adj.)
not producing milk;
a dry cow
dry (adj.)
(of liquor) having a low residual sugar content because of decomposition of sugar during fermentation;
a dry Bordeaux
a dry white burgundy
dry (adj.)
without a mucous or watery discharge; "that rare thing in the wintertime; a small child with a dry nose";
a dry cough
dry (adj.)
not shedding tears;
with dry eyes
dry sobs
dry (adj.)
lacking interest or stimulation; dull and lifeless; "dull and juiceless as only book knowledge can be when it is unrelated to...life"- John Mason Brown;
a dry book
a dry lecture filled with trivial details
Synonyms: juiceless
dry (adj.)
used of solid substances in contrast with liquid ones;
dry weight
dry (adj.)
unproductive especially of the expected results;
a mind dry of new ideas
a dry run
dry (adj.)
having no adornment or coloration;
rattled off the facts in a dry mechanical manner
dry facts
dry (adj.)
(of food) eaten without a spread or sauce or other garnish;
dry meat
dry toast
dry (adj.)
having a large proportion of strong liquor;
a very dry martini is almost straight gin
dry (adj.)
lacking warmth or emotional involvement;
a dry greeting
a dry reading of the lines
a dry critique
dry (adj.)
practicing complete abstinence from alcoholic beverages; "no thank you; I happen to be teetotal";
he's been dry for ten years
Synonyms: teetotal
2
dry (v.)
remove the moisture from and make dry;
dry clothes
dry hair
Synonyms: dry out
dry (v.)
become dry or drier;
Synonyms: dry out
3
dry (n.)
a reformer who opposes the use of intoxicating beverages;
Synonyms: prohibitionist
From wordnet.princeton.edu