soften Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary

Meaning of “soften” in the English Dictionary

"soften" in British English

See all translations

softenverb [I or T]

uk   /ˈsɒf.ən/  us   /ˈsɑː.fən/

soften verb [I or T] (LESS HARD)

to ​becomesoft, or to make something ​soft: You can soften the ​butter by ​warming it ​gently. These ​driedapples will soften (up) if you ​soak them in ​water.

soften verb [I or T] (MORE GENTLE)

to ​become more ​gentle or less ​strict, or to make someone do this: The ​news will ​upset him - we must ​think of a way to soften the ​blow (= make the ​news less ​unpleasant for him). Would you say the government's ​stance on ​law and ​order has softened?
Phrasal verbs
(Definition of soften from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"soften" in American English

See all translations


 us   /ˈsɔ·fən/

soften verb (BECOME GENTLE)

[I/T] to ​becomegentle, or to make something less ​forceful or ​loud: [T] He made an ​effort to soften his ​tone.

soften verb (WEAKEN)

[T] to make something ​weaker: Congress will move to soften the law’s ​impact.

soften verb (BECOME LESS FIRM)

[I/T] to ​become less hard or ​firm, or to make something less ​firm: [I] The ​butter will soften if you ​leave it out.
(Definition of soften from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"soften" in Business English

See all translations


uk   us   /ˈsɒfən/
[I] FINANCE, STOCK MARKET if ​demand, a ​price, a ​market, etc. softens, it ​stopsincreasing or it goes down: Share prices softened with continued worries about the country's ​economicrecovery. Although demand softened again in November, it has ​strengthened in December. When the economy began softening, the ​relatively newer ​factories in the ​suburbs began to ​feelpressure. There are ​signs that ​householdexpenditure is already softening after the ​longestconsumerboom on ​record.soften against sth Sterling may have ​strengthened against the ​dollar but it's softened against the ​euro.
[I or T] to become, or to make something seem, less severe or unpleasant: The regulator's ​stance on water ​mergers has softened. The new ​draft softens the ​rules on the role of the ​senior non-executive ​director. The ​organisation is ​trying to soften its ​image.
(Definition of soften from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of soften?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

“soften” in British English

“soften” in Business English

Word of the Day

be nothing short of

used to emphasize a situation, quality, or type of behaviour

Word of the Day

Coffee culture
Coffee culture
by Colin McIntosh,
November 24, 2015
In a study published recently and widely reported in the media, researchers from Harvard University School of Public Health found that people who drink a moderate amount of coffee per day are less likely to die from a range of diseases. Good news for coffee drinkers, who make up an ever-increasing proportion

Read More 

climatarian adjective
climatarian adjective
November 23, 2015
choosing to eat a diet that has minimal impact on the climate, i.e. one that excludes food transported a long way or meat whose production gives rise to CO2 emissions Climate change is not normally on people’s minds when they choose what to have for lunch, but a new diet is calling for

Read More