dry2 S2 W3 past tense and past participle dried, present participle drying, third person singular dries [intransitive and transitive]
to make something dry, or to become dry:
Mrs Brown hung the washing on the line to dry.
He was drying his hair with a towel.
Mary dried her hands.
Leave the first coat of paint to dry before adding another.
She stood up and dried her eyes (=wiped away her tears).
He quickly dried himself on the thin towel.
2 also dry up British English
to rub plates, dishes etc dry with a cloth after they have been washed:
You wash and I'll dry.
Shall I dry up these glasses?
dry offphrasal verb
We swam in the sea, then stretched out on the sand to dry off.
dry something ↔ off
He dried the camera off, hoping it would still work.
dry outphrasal verb
to become completely dry or to make something completely dry, especially after it has been very wet:
In summer, water the plants regularly and never let the soil dry out.
dry something ↔ out
The kitchen was flooded and it took ages to dry it out.
to stop drinking alcohol after you have become an alcoholic, or to make someone do this:
He's been drying out at a private clinic.
The hospital dried Michael out and sent him home.
dry upphrasal verb
if a supply of something dries up, it comes to an end and no more is available:
come to an end
Foreign investment may dry up.
The work soon dried up.
if something such as a river dries up, the water in it disappears:
Across central and west Texas, waterholes and wells have dried up.
dry something ↔ up
Taking too much water for household use is drying up the river.
if someone dries up, they stop talking:
'It was -' She dried up again.
Everyone became embarrassed and conversation dried up.
to rub plates, dishes etc dry with a cloth after they have been washed
plates/dishes etcBritish EnglishDF
dry something ↔ up
I'll just dry up these mugs and we can have a coffee.