The adjective shallow can describe things that aren't very deep, like a shallow puddle, or people who don't have much emotional or intellectual depth, like shallow people who judge others on their looks and how much money they have.
Shallow likely comes from the Old English word sceald, which means "shoal," the water near a shoreline. So, shallow describes something that is close to the surface — like the shallow roots of a newly-planted tree or a person whose interest in someone or something isn't very deep. For instance, a shallow person might go to the opening of a new art exhibition not so much to see the artworks as meet the wealthy people on the museum's board of trustees.
adj lacking physical depth; having little spatial extension downward or inward from an outer surface or backward or outward from a center
coming only to the ankle or knee
shallow enough to be crossed by walking or riding on an animal or in a vehicle
relating to the region of shallow water adjoining the seacoast
reefy, shelfy, shelvy, shoaly
full of submerged reefs or sandbanks or shoals
having great spatial extension or penetration downward or inward from an outer surface or backward or laterally or outward from a center; sometimes used in combination
abysmal, abyssal, unfathomable
resembling an abyss in depth; so deep as to be unmeasurable
of or carried on in waters of great depth
profound, unfathomed, unplumbed, unsounded
situated at or extending to great depth; too deep to have been sounded or plumbed
(of e.g. closets or refrigerators) extending very far enough back to allow a person to enter
of depth; not capable of being sounded or measured
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