Empty vs. Full: What's the Difference?
Empty refers to containing nothing, while full implies being completely filled or occupied.
Empty and full are antonyms describing the state or condition of a container or space in terms of its occupancy. Empty denotes the absence of content; it means that a container or a space holds nothing within its bounds. Full, on the other hand, is the complete opposite, referring to a state where every part of a container or space is occupied by something, leaving no room for more. It indicates the presence of content, with no available space left unoccupied.
These terms, empty and full, are utilized across various contexts to convey different states of occupancy. A container is described as empty when it has no contents, like an empty glass or an empty box. Full, in contrast, is used when a container is filled to its utmost capacity, such as a full bottle of water or a full basket of fruits. These words are versatile and can be applied to a wide range of objects, places, and scenarios to indicate the level of content or occupancy.
In a broader and metaphorical sense, empty and full can also be used to express emotions or states of being. One might feel empty, meaning devoid of emotion or purpose, whereas feeling full could imply a sense of fulfillment or satisfaction. In this context, empty conveys a lack or absence, not just of tangible objects, but also of intangible elements like feelings, ideas, or qualities. Conversely, full conveys abundance or excess, representing a state of completeness or wholeness, whether tangible or intangible.
In mathematical and logical contexts, empty and full can signify different states or values. An empty set in mathematics, for example, is a set containing no elements. In contrast, the term full, when used in mathematical logic or in set theory, may imply a set that contains all the possible elements defined within certain constraints. Thus, the usage of these terms is not limited to physical spaces or containers but extends to abstract and conceptual domains, representing absence or presence, lack or completeness, respectively.
To sum it up, the words empty and full represent opposite states or conditions relating to the presence or absence of content, substances, emotions, or elements. Empty signifies nothingness, a lack, or a void, whether in a physical, emotional, or conceptual sense. Full represents the contrary, indicating completeness, abundance, or occupancy, applied to various contexts ranging from physical containers to emotions and abstract concepts.
Completely filled or occupied.
Physical, emotional, mathematical.
Physical, emotional, mathematical.
Represents absence or lack of content.
Represents presence or abundance of content.
Can imply lack of emotion or purpose.
Can imply fulfillment or satisfaction.
Used for containers, spaces, emotions, and abstract concepts.
Used for containers, spaces, emotions, and abstract concepts.
Empty and Full Definitions
Containing nothing; having no substance or content.
The box was empty.
Complete in every detail.
She lived a full life.
Lacking meaning, purpose, or sincerity.
His apology seemed empty and insincere.
Not lacking in any essential quality.
The play was full of emotion.
Lacking force, vigor, or effectiveness.
The team gave an empty performance.
After the meal, we were all full.
Having nothing inside or on the surface; holding or containing nothing
An empty bag.
An empty lot.
Containing all that is normal or possible
A full pail.
(Mathematics) Having no elements or members; null
An empty set.
Complete in every particular
A full account.
Having no occupants; not being used
An empty chair.
Amounting to three balls and two strikes. Used of a count.
Not having an incumbent or occupant; unfilled
An empty post at the embassy.
Having a base runner at first, second, and third base
The bases were full when the slugger stepped up to bat.
Not put to purposeful use; idle
Of maximum or highest degree
At full speed.
Lacking force or power
An empty threat.
Being at the peak of development or maturity
In full bloom.
Lacking purpose or substance; meaningless
An empty life.
Of or relating to a full moon.
Needing nourishment; hungry
"More fierce and more inexorable far / Than empty tigers or the roaring sea" (Shakespeare).
Having a great deal or many
A book full of errors.
Empty of pity.
Totally qualified, accepted, or empowered
A full member of the club.
To remove the contents of
Emptied the dishwasher.
Rounded in shape; plump
A full figure.
To transfer or pour off completely
Empty the ashes into a pail.
Having or made with a generous amount of fabric
To unburden; relieve
Empty oneself of doubt.
Having an appetite completely satisfied, especially for food or drink
Was full after the Thanksgiving dinner.
To become empty
The theater emptied after the performance.
Providing an abundance, especially of food.
To discharge its contents
The river empties into a bay.
Having depth and body; rich
A full aroma.
An empty container.
Completely absorbed or preoccupied
“He was already pretty full of himself” (Ron Rosenbaum).
Devoid of content; containing nothing or nobody; vacant.
An empty purse
An empty jug
An empty stomach
Possessing both parents in common
Containing no elements (as of a string, array, or set), opposed to being null (having no valid value).
Of or relating to a full-size bed
A full bed skirt.
(obsolete) Free; clear; devoid; often with of.
Full in the path of the moon.
Having nothing to carry, emptyhanded; unburdened.
To a complete extent; entirely. Sometimes used in combination
Knew full well.
Destitute of effect, sincerity, or sense; said of language.
Empty words, or threats
To make (a garment) full, as by pleating or gathering.
Unable to satisfy; hollow; vain.
To become full. Used of the moon.
Destitute of reality, or real existence; unsubstantial.
To increase the density and usually the thickness of (cloth) by shrinking and beating or pressing.
Destitute of, or lacking, sense, knowledge, or courtesy.
An empty coxcomb
The maximum or complete size or amount
Repaid in full.
(of some female animals, especially cows and sheep) Not pregnant; not producing offspring when expected to do so during the breeding season.
Empty cow rates have increased in recent years.
The highest degree or state
Living life to the full.
Producing nothing; unfruitful.
An empty vine
A full-size bed.
To make empty; to void; to remove the contents of.
To empty a well or a cistern
The cinema emptied quickly after the end of the film.
Containing the maximum possible amount that can fit in the space available.
The jugs were full to the point of overflowing.
(intransitive) Of a river, duct, etc: to drain or flow toward an ultimate destination.
Salmon River empties on the W shore about 2 miles below Bear River.
Complete; with nothing omitted.
Our book gives full treatment to the subject of angling.
A container, especially a bottle, whose contents have been used up, leaving it empty.
Put the empties out to be recycled.
She had tattoos the full length of her arms.
He was prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Containing nothing; not holding or having anything within; void of contents or appropriate contents; not filled; - said of an inclosure, or a container, as a box, room, house, etc.; as, an empty chest, room, purse, or pitcher; an empty stomach; empty shackles.
Completely empowered, authorized or qualified (in some role); not limited.
Free; clear; devoid; - often with of.
I shall find you empty of that fault.
(informal) Having eaten to satisfaction, having a "full" stomach; replete.
"I'm full," he said, pushing back from the table.
Having nothing to carry; unburdened.
When ye go ye shall not go empty.
Replete, abounding with.
This movie doesn't make sense; it's full of plot holes.
I prefer my pizzas full of toppings.
Destitute of effect, sincerity, or sense; - said of language; as, empty words, or threats.
Words are but empty thanks.
(of physical features) Plump, round.
Full lips; a full face; a full figure
Unable to satisfy; unsatisfactory; hollow; vain; - said of pleasure, the world, etc.
Pleas'd in the silent shade with empty praise.
(of the moon) Having its entire face illuminated.
Producing nothing; unfruitful; - said of a plant or tree; as, an empty vine.
Seven empty ears blasted with the east wind.
(of garments) Of a size that is ample, wide, or having ample folds or pleats to be comfortable.
A full pleated skirt;
She needed her full clothing during her pregnancy.
Destitute of, or lacking, sense, knowledge, or courtesy; as, empty brains; an empty coxcomb.
That in civility thou seem'st so empty.
Having depth and body; rich.
A full singing voice
Destitute of reality, or real existence; unsubstantial; as, empty dreams.
(obsolete) Having the mind filled with ideas; stocked with knowledge; stored with information.
An empty box, crate, cask, etc.; - used in commerce, esp. in transportation of freight; as, "special rates for empties."
Having the attention, thoughts, etc., absorbed in any matter, and the feelings more or less excited by it.
She's full of her latest project.
To deprive of the contents; to exhaust; to make void or destitute; to make vacant; to pour out; to discharge; as, to empty a vessel; to empty a well or a cistern.
The clouds . . . empty themselves upon the earth.
Filled with emotions.
To discharge itself; as, a river empties into the ocean.
(obsolete) Impregnated; made pregnant.
To become empty.
Said of the three cards of the same rank in a full house.
A container that has been emptied;
Return all empties to the store
Make void or empty of contents;
Empty the box
The alarm emptied the building
(archaic) Fully; quite; very; thoroughly; completely; exactly; entirely.
Become empty or void of its content;
The room emptied
Utmost measure or extent; highest state or degree; the state, position, or moment of fullness; fill.
I was fed to the full.
Leave behind empty; move out of;
You must vacate your office by tonight
(of the moon) The phase of the moon when its entire face is illuminated, full moon.
Empty the water
(freestyle skiing) An aerialist maneuver consisting of a backflip in conjunction and simultaneous with a complete twist.
Excrete or discharge from the body
(of the moon) To become full or wholly illuminated.
Holding or containing nothing;
An empty glass
An empty room
Full of empty seats
(transitive) To baptise.
Devoid of significance or point;
A hollow victory
To make cloth denser and firmer by soaking, beating and pressing; to waulk or walk.
Having nothing inside;
An empty sphere
Filled up, having within its limits all that it can contain; supplied; not empty or vacant; - said primarily of hollow vessels, and hence of anything else; as, a cup full of water; a house full of people.
Had the throne been full, their meeting would not have been regular.
After skipped lunch the men were empty by suppertime
Abundantly furnished or provided; sufficient in quantity, quality, or degree; copious; plenteous; ample; adequate; as, a full meal; a full supply; a full voice; a full compensation; a house full of furniture.
Emptied of emotion;
After the violent argument he felt empty
Not wanting in any essential quality; complete; entire; perfect; adequate; as, a full narrative; a person of full age; a full stop; a full face; the full moon.
It came to pass, at the end of two full years, that Pharaohdreamed.
The man commandsLike a full soldier.
I can notRequest a fuller satisfactionThan you have freely granted.
Devoid of inhabitants or occupants.
The house felt empty without her.
I am full of the burnt offerings of rams.
Having no value; worthless.
It was an empty gesture.
Having the mind filled with ideas; stocked with knowledge; stored with information.
Reading maketh a full man.
Having the attention, thoughts, etc., absorbed in any matter, and the feelings more or less excited by it, as, to be full of some project.
Every one is full of the miracles done by cold baths on decayed and weak constitutions.
Filled with emotions.
The heart is so full that a drop overfills it.
Impregnated; made pregnant.
Ilia, the fair, . . . full of Mars.
Complete measure; utmost extent; the highest state or degree.
The swan's-down feather,That stands upon the swell at full of tide.
Quite; to the same degree; without abatement or diminution; with the whole force or effect; thoroughly; completely; exactly; entirely.
The pawn I proffer shall be full as good.
The diapason closing full in man.
Full in the center of the sacred wood.
To become full or wholly illuminated; as, the moon fulls at midnight.
To thicken by moistening, heating, and pressing, as cloth; to mill; to make compact; to scour, cleanse, and thicken in a mill.
To become fulled or thickened; as, this material fulls well.
Beat for the purpose of cleaning and thickening;
Full the cloth
Make (a garment) fuller by pleating or gathering
Increase in phase;
The moon is waxing
Containing as much or as many as is possible or normal;
A full glass
A sky full of stars
A full life
The auditorium was full to overflowing
Constituting the full quantity or extent; complete;
An entire town devastated by an earthquake
Gave full attention
A total failure
Complete in extent or degree and in every particular;
A full game
A total eclipse
A total disaster
Filled to satisfaction with food or drink;
A full stomach
(of sound) having marked depth and body;
A full voice
Having the normally expected amount;
Gives full measure
Gives good measure
A good mile from here
Being at a peak or culminating point;
Not separated into parts or shares; constituting an undivided unit;
An undivided interest in the property
A full share
Having ample fabric;
The current taste for wide trousers
A full skirt
To the greatest degree or extent; completely or entirely; (`full' in this sense is used as a combining form);
He didn't fully understand
Knew full well
Containing as much or as many as possible or normal.
The jar was full of cookies.
Having an abundance of some characteristic quality.
His voice was full of anger.
Can empty and full be used metaphorically?
Yes, both terms can be used metaphorically to represent lack or abundance of intangible elements like emotions.
Is full used to describe a container that is completely occupied?
Yes, full describes a state where a container is completely occupied, with no space left.
Are empty and full antonyms?
Yes, empty and full are antonyms, representing opposite states.
Can empty refer to something devoid of sincerity or meaning?
Yes, empty can denote something that lacks sincerity, meaning, or value.
Can full represent fulfillment or satisfaction?
Yes, full can represent a sense of fulfillment, satisfaction, or completeness.
Is an empty container one that contains nothing?
Yes, an empty container is one that contains nothing within it.
Are empty and full used in mathematical contexts?
Yes, both terms have applications in mathematical contexts to represent different states or values.
Can empty imply a lack of purpose or effectiveness?
Yes, empty can imply a lack of purpose, effectiveness, or vigor.
Does empty imply the absence of content?
Yes, empty implies the absence of content or substance.
Is empty associated with a sense of lack or void?
Yes, empty is associated with a sense of lack, void, or nothingness.
Does full imply completeness or abundance?
Yes, full implies a state of completeness, abundance, or excess.
Can empty and full apply to emotions and feelings?
Yes, both terms can apply to emotions and feelings, representing a range from lack to abundance.
Can full imply a condition where no more can be added?
Yes, full implies a condition of being so completely filled or occupied that no more can be added.
Does full suggest being not lacking in any essential quality?
Yes, full suggests being complete and not lacking in any essential quality.
Can the terms be used in various contexts?
Yes, empty and full are versatile terms, used in various contexts ranging from physical spaces to emotions and abstract concepts.
Written bySawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited byHuma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.