Meaning of SOFT in English


I. ˈsȯft adjective

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English sōfte, alteration of sēfte; akin to Old High German semfti soft

Date: before 12th century


a. : pleasing or agreeable to the senses : bringing ease, comfort, or quiet

the soft influences of home

b. : having a bland or mellow rather than a sharp or acid taste


(1) : not bright or glaring : subdued

(2) : having or producing little contrast or a relatively short range of tones

a soft photographic print

d. : quiet in pitch or volume

e. of the eyes : having a liquid or gentle appearance

f. : smooth or delicate in texture, grain, or fiber

soft cashmere

soft fur


(1) : balmy, mild, or clement in weather or temperature

(2) : moving or falling with slight force or impact : not violent

soft breezes

2. : demanding little work or effort : easy

a soft job


a. : sounding as in ace and gem respectively — used of c and g or their sound

b. of a consonant : voiced

c. : constituting a vowel before which there is a y sound or a y-like modification of a consonant or constituting a consonant in whose articulation there is a y-like modification or which is followed by a y sound (as in Russian)

4. archaic : moving in a leisurely manner

5. : rising gradually

a soft slope

6. : having curved or rounded outline : not harsh or jagged

soft hills against the horizon

7. : marked by a gentleness, kindness, or tenderness: as


(1) : not harsh or onerous in character

a policy of soft competition

(2) : based on negotiation, conciliation, or flexibility rather than on force, threats, or intransigence

took a soft line during the crisis

(3) : tending to take a soft line — usually used with on

soft on dictators

soft on law and order

b. : tending to ingratiate or disarm : engaging , kind

a soft answer turns away wrath — Proverbs 15:1 (Revised Standard Version)

c. : marked by mildness : unassuming , low-key


a. : emotionally suggestible or responsive : impressionable

b. : unduly susceptible to influence : compliant

c. : lacking firmness or strength of character : feeble , unmanly

d. : amorously attracted or emotionally involved — used with on

has been soft on her for years


a. : lacking robust strength, stamina, or endurance especially because of living in ease or luxury

grown soft and indolent

b. : weak or deficient mentally

soft in the head


a. : yielding to physical pressure

b. : permitting someone or something to sink in — used of wet ground


(1) : of a consistency that may be shaped or molded

(2) : capable of being spread

d. : easily magnetized and demagnetized

e. : lacking relatively or comparatively in hardness

soft iron

11. : deficient in or free from substances (as calcium and magnesium salts) that prevent lathering of soap

soft water

12. : having relatively low energy

soft X-rays

13. of news : relatively less serious or significant

14. : occurring at such a speed and under such circumstances as to avoid destructive impact

soft landing of a spacecraft on the moon

15. : not protected against enemy attack

a soft aboveground launching site

soft targets

16. : biodegradable

a soft detergent

soft pesticides

17. of a drug : considered less detrimental than a hard narcotic

18. : easily polarized — used of acids and bases


a. of currency : not readily convertible

b. of a loan : not secured by collateral


a. : being low due to sluggish market conditions

soft prices

b. : sluggish , slow

a soft market

21. : not firmly committed

soft unreliable political support

22. : soft-core

soft porn


a. : being or based on interpretive or speculative data

soft evidence

b. : utilizing or based on soft data

soft science

24. : being or using renewable sources of energy (as solar radiation, wind, or tides)

soft technologies

25. of money : contributed (as by a corporation) to a political party rather than directly to a particular candidate

• soft·ish ˈsȯf-tish adjective

• soft·ly ˈsȯf(t)-lē adverb

• soft·ness ˈsȯf(t)-nəs noun

II. adverb

Date: before 12th century

: in a soft or gentle manner : softly

III. noun

Date: 15th century

: a soft object, material, or part

the soft of the thumb

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.