Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR DEADNESS

In alluding just now to our system of education, I spoke of the deadness of its details.

"Just a taste, to take off the deadness of the water," said Driscoll.

The deadness went out of her voice, and it lifted to another note.

As an item of interest, did you know that your house has lost its deadness?

By that time there was no longer a doubt about his deadness.

He was all life: there was no deadness, no coldness—he was all life.

See your deadness as a challenge and resolve not to be overcome by it but to overcome it.

Yet there was one spot where it seemed that deadness made encampment.

What struck me at once was the deadness of everything I looked upon.

Then he wheeled eastward and the light paled into the deadness of despair.

WORD ORIGIN

Old English dead "dead," also "torpid, dull;" of water, "still, standing," from Proto-Germanic *dauthaz (cf. Old Saxon dod, Danish død, Swedish död, Old Frisian dad, Middle Dutch doot, Dutch dood, Old High German tot, German tot, Old Norse dauðr, Gothic dauþs "dead"), from PIE *dhou-toz-, from root *dheu- (3) "to die" (see die (v.)).

Meaning "insensible" is first attested early 13c. Of places, "inactive, dull," from 1580s. Used from 16c. in adjectival sense of "utter, absolute, quite" (cf. dead drunk first attested 1590s; dead heat, 1796). As an adverb, from late 14c. Dead on is 1889, from marksmanship. Dead duck is from 1844. Dead letter is from 1703, used of laws lacking force as well as uncollected mail. Phrase in the dead of the night first recorded 1540s.

Dead soldier "emptied liquor bottle" is from 1913 in that form; the image is older:

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR DEADNESS

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.