top of page



How to pronounce shrivel (audio)


Monster Trucks in Space

Dictionary definition of shrivel

To wilt, dry, or wither due to loss of moisture or vitality.
"The flowers began to shrivel in the scorching heat of the summer."

#1 New Release on Amazon!

Detailed meaning of shrivel

When something shrivels, it undergoes a reduction in size, becoming smaller, wrinkled, or shrunken. This can occur in living organisms, such as plants, when they lack water or nutrients, causing their leaves, stems, or fruits to lose turgidity and vitality. Similarly, organic matter or food items can shrivel when exposed to air or heat for an extended period, leading to a loss of moisture and resulting in a wrinkled or shrunken appearance. The verb "shrivel" often conveys a sense of decay, desiccation, or deterioration, indicating the loss of freshness or vibrancy. It can also be used metaphorically to describe the diminishing or fading of an individual's physical or mental state. In essence, "shrivel" captures the process of something losing moisture, vitality, or volume, leading to a shrunken or withered state.

Example sentences containing shrivel

1. Too much sun exposure can make your skin shrivel.
2. If you don't water the plant, it will quickly shrivel.
3. Apples left outside for too long will shrivel in the heat.
4. As the heat intensified, the leaves started to shrivel.
5. The fruit will shrivel if you leave it in the sun.
6. The drought made the lake shrivel to a fraction of its size.

History and etymology of shrivel

The verb 'shrivel' finds its etymological roots in the Middle English word 'schrivel,' which was derived from the Old English term 'screofan.' 'Screofan' meant to contract or shrivel, particularly in the context of plants wilting or drying up. This Old English term has its origins in the Proto-Germanic word 'skreuban,' which carried the notion of twisting or contracting. The evolution of 'shrivel' as a verb describes the process of wilting, drying, or withering due to the loss of moisture or vitality, closely mirroring its historical roots in the idea of contraction and twisting, as if something is collapsing or becoming smaller and less vital.

Quiz: Find the meaning of shrivel

Try Again!


Further usage examples of shrivel

1. The flowers in the vase will shrivel without water.
2. My hope began to shrivel when I didn't hear back from the job interview.
3. Without its regular supply of water, the garden started to shrivel.
4. If we don't act quickly, our chances of success will shrivel.
5. When cooked at a high heat, spinach will quickly shrivel.
6. My optimism began to shrivel after a series of setbacks.
7. Without proper care, the young saplings will shrivel.
8. The harsh winter made the once lush green fields shrivel.
9. Balloons will shrivel over time as the air slowly escapes.
10. If left untouched, paint will eventually shrivel and crack.
11. Overcooking can make the vegetables shrivel and lose their nutrients.
12. If you forget to hydrate it, the sponge will shrivel.
13. With time and age, skin tends to shrivel.
14. The harsh criticism made my confidence shrivel.



wither, bloom, swell, expand


ACT 14 (American College Testing), Decline and Decay, High School 9

bottom of page