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grave
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grave
as in:  Her manner was grave.


Her smile disappeared as she suddenly realized the gravity of her situation.
  serious and/or solemn

(see word notes for more detailed definitions based on context)
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gravity grave gravely graveness
Notes:
The exact meaning of this sense of grave is often subject to its context. For example:
  • "This is a grave problem," or "a situation of the utmost gravity." — important, dangerous, or causing worry
  • "She was in a grave mood upon returning from the funeral." — sad (with a heavy heart)
  • "She looked me in the eye and gravely promised." — sincere and dignified without humor
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Samples:
  • Her smile disappeared as she suddenly realized the gravity of her situation.
  • It was the day of the funeral and she was in a grave mood.
  • She assumed the gravity of a judge and said...
  • But they greeted me with grave courtesy, murmuring what they had to offer as we shook hands.
    Corrie Ten Boom  --  The Hiding Place

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  • It never occurred to me to think that other kids, safe at home, hiding out—that the others, who had never seen the inside of a cabin, experienced the grave and still nothing that was life at camp—might have managed to teach themselves amazing things.
    Alexandra Bracken  --  The Darkest Minds
  • Hazel and Frank had never been to Camp Half-Blood, but the others nodded gravely.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Blood of Olympus
  • Alice thought the whole thing very absurd, but they all looked so grave that she did not dare to laugh;
    Lewis Carroll  --  Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
  • "Then I have misjudged you, and I ask your pardon"—he bowed gravely.
    Willa Cather  --  My Antonia
  • His statement seemed so fantastic that I suspected him of pulling my leg, but he was perfectly grave and serious.
    Agatha Christie  --  Early Cases Of Hercule Poirot
  • Dick nodded gravely, looking at the stone floor, like a priest in the confessional—
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  Tender is the Night

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  • ...trying to make a joke, but they were all too grave for a joke and no one smiled.
    Ernest Hemingway  --  For Whom the Bell Tolls
  • How do people choose their final words? Do they realize their gravity?
    Mitch Albom  --  The Five People You Meet in Heaven
  • one of his servants was gravely ill,
    Paulo Coelho  --  The Alchemist
  • he said gravely, "that is very serious indeed!"
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
  • I roused the five of you because we are all in grave danger.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eragon
  • "I don’t see anything funny," she said gravely, when she could be heard.
    Louisa May Alcott  --  Little Women
  • General Pickett is gravely concerned, sir.
    Michael Shaara  --  The Killer Angels
  • Msimangu said gravely, yes, she is very sick.
    Alan Paton  --  Cry, the Beloved Country
  • Slowly and gravely the Witch repeated, "There is no sun."
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Silver Chair
  • First, I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate.
    Martin Luther King, Jr.  --  Letter from a Birmingham Jail
  • She liked him—in spite of his gravity and reserve, she beheld in him an object of interest.
    Jane Austen  --  Sense and Sensibility
  • You’ve already escaped the gravest danger:
    Elie Wiesel  --  Night
  • With purpose to be dress’d in an opinion
    Of wisdom, gravity, profound conceit;
    William Shakespeare  --  The Merchant of Venice
  • Utter your gravity o’er a gossip’s bowl, For here we need it not.
    William Shakespeare  --  Romeo and Juliet
  • There was a gravity in his manner and a quiet so profound that all talk stopped when he spoke. His authority was so great that his word was taken on any subject, be it politics or love.
    John Steinbeck  --  Of Mice and Men
  • For nothing is more suitable to persons of gravity and decorum than to endure minor inconveniences with constancy.
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Horse and His Boy
  • His brown eyes lost some of their gravity.
    John Howard Griffin  --  Black Like Me
  • He turned to Alby then, and looked at him gravely.
    James Dashner  --  The Maze Runner
  • More grave nodding; they knew about nightmares.
    William Golding  --  Lord of the Flies
  • The position is fraught with grave danger.
    Agatha Christie  --  And Then There Were None
  • Tom looks at me very grave, and says...
    Mark Twain  --  The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
  • The Giver looked at him gravely.
    Lois Lowry  --  The Giver
  • Dumbledore was looking unusually grave.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  • "What I’m asking from you is to grant an old man his dying wish," he said gravely.
    Khaled Hosseini  --  The Kite Runner
  • Pa shook hands gravely.
    John Steinbeck  --  The Grapes of Wrath
  • ...and they saluted him gravely, like gladiators greeting Caesar before they died for his entertainment.
    Orson Scott Card  --  Ender’s Game
  • "You’re mistaken, my son," he said gravely.
    Albert Camus  --  The Stranger
  • You are in grave danger.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Sea of Monsters
  • I have grave doubts.
    Bram Stoker  --  Dracula
  • He nodded gravely, like we were sharing some dark secret.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Battle of the Labyrinth
  • But their spirits sank at his grave words, and they all felt that the adventure was far more dangerous than they had thought,
    J.R.R. Tolkien  --  The Hobbit
  • Juan Tomas nodded gravely.
    John Steinbeck  --  The Pearl
  • Anne knelt at Marilla’s knee and looked up gravely.
    Lucy Maud Montgomery  --  Anne Of Green Gables
  • he suddenly looked less grave
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
  • As he said this he sighed and looked so grave and noble and mysterious that for a second Digory really thought he was saying something rather fine.
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Magician’s Nephew
  • Mallory looked at me then, her expression grave.
    Sarah Dessen  --  Just Listen
  • Cash’s face is also gravely composed; he and I look at one another with long probing looks,
    William Faulkner  --  As I Lay Dying
  • She nodded her head gravely.
    James Joyce  --  Dubliners
  • "If you’re gonna change your mind," Hallorann said, bending over him gravely, "you better do it quick."
    Stephen King  --  The Shining
  • "We have to warn the gods. Something else is going to happen."
    Chiron looked at me gravely. "Something worse than Typhon? I hope not."
    Rick Riordan  --  The Last Olympian
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Associated words [difficulty]:   grave [1]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Classic Literature, History, Religion & Spirtuality
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