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Related to sobered: somber
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a sobering thought

A thought or idea which is dispiriting, depressing, or traumatic. It's a sobering thought when you consider how many people go without clean water every day.
See also: sober, thought

*sober as a judge

1. Cliché very formal, somber, or stuffy. (*Also: as ~.) You certainly look gloomy, Bill. You're sober as a judge. Tom's as sober as a judge. I think he's angry.
2. Cliché not drunk; alert and completely sober. (*Also: as ~.) John's drunk? No, he's as sober as a judge. You should be sober as a judge when you drive a car.
See also: judge, sober

sober someone up

1. Lit. to take actions that will cause a drunken person to become sober. some coffee ought to sober him up. He tried to sober himself up because he had to drive home. They tried to sober up the guys who had been out all night.
2. Fig. to cause someone to face reality. The harsh reality of what had happened sobered him up immediately. The arrival of the police sobered up all the revelers.
See also: sober, up

sober up

to recover from alcohol or drug intoxication. Barlowe had one hour to sober up and get to the station. It took him a while to sober up.
See also: sober, up

stone(–cold) sober

 and cold sober
absolutely sober. I am stone-cold sober, or I will be by morning anyway. I found the secret to waking up cold sober. Don't drink.
See also: sober, stone

be as sober as a judge

to not be at all drunk It's awful when everyone else around you has been drinking and you're as sober as a judge.
See also: judge, sober

sober as a judge

Not at all intoxicated, quite clear-headed, as in Even after three drinks he was sober as a judge. Why judges should be equated with sobriety is not known, but the simile was first recorded in 1694.
See also: judge, sober

sober up

1. To have one's feeling of intoxication subside: I waited until I had sobered up and then drove home.
2. To cause someone's feeling of intoxication to subside: The jailer grabbed a pail of water and a cup of coffee to sober up the drunk. That nap really sobered me up, but I still have a hangover.
3. To overcome an alcohol or drug addiction: It wasn't until I had sobered up that I was able hold a steady job.
4. To become serious, grave, or solemn: Everyone sobered up and felt ashamed when they heard the bad news.
5. To make someone or something serious, grave, or solemn: The news of the disaster sobered them up. The accident sobered up the workers, reminding them how dangerous their job was.
See also: sober, up

(as) sober as a judge

mod. as sober (free from alcohol) as it is possible to be. Kelly—who was starched as could be—claimed to be sober as a judge.
See also: judge, sober

sober as a judge

See also: judge, sober

cold sober

mod. sober; completely sober. (see also sold cober.) He had a fine head on and wanted more than anything to be cold sober and alert.
See also: cold, sober

sober up

in. to recover from alcohol or drug intoxication. Marlowe had one hour to sober up and get to the station.
See also: sober, up

stone (cold) sober

mod. absolutely sober. I am stone cold sober, or I will be by morning anyway.
See also: cold, sober, stone

stone sober

See also: sober, stone
References in classic literature ?
He got up with his usual ardour but as if sobered by a momentous resolve and said:
Now I am a wife: my bliss is sobered, but not destroyed; my hopes diminished, but not departed; my fears increased, but not yet thoroughly confirmed; and, thank heaven, I am a mother too.
Lord Galloway's swollen hatred was satisfied and even sobered.
Their once flaming regard is sobered by time in either breast, and losing in violence what it gains in extent, it becomes a thorough good understanding.
Mechanical movements have not the characteristic of appropriateness, unless by accident, as when a drunken man falls into a waterbutt and is sobered.
But remembering the medallist of the year before, Razumov, the young man of no parentage, was sobered.
Considerably refreshed by this ablution, both in mind and body, and almost sobered for the time, he dried himself as he best could; then crossed the road, and plied the knocker of the Middle Temple gate.
She could not bear to remain away from it any longer - it was like deserting him - and she hurried swiftly back, accompanied by half-a-dozen labourers, including the drunken man whom the news had sobered, and who was the best man of all.