1590–1600; deafen + -ing1

half-deafening, adjective
nondeafening, adjective
nondeafeningly, adverb
quasi-deafening, adjective Unabridged


verb (used with object)
to make deaf: The accident deafened him for life.
to stun or overwhelm with noise: The pounding of the machines deafened us.
deaden ( def 3 ).
Obsolete. to render (a sound) inaudible, especially by a louder sound.

1590–1600; deaf + -en1

deafeningly, adverb
half-deafened, adjective
nondeafened, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
deafen (ˈdɛfən)
(tr) to make deaf, esp momentarily, as by a loud noise

deafening (ˈdɛfənɪŋ)
excessively loud: deafening music

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1590s, "to make deaf," from deaf. The earlier verb was simply deaf (mid-15c.). For "to become deaf, to grow deaf," O.E. had adeafian (intrans.), which survived into M.E. as deave but then took on a transitive sense from mid-14c. and sank from use except in dialects (where it
mostly has transitive and figurative senses), leaving English without an intransitive verb here.

"very loud," 1590s, from deafen (q.v.). Deafening silence is attested by 1830.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

deafen deaf·en (děf'ən)
v. deaf·ened, deaf·en·ing, deaf·ens
To make deaf, especially momentarily by a loud noise.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
These crustaceans can close their giant claws so violently that they snap shut
  with a deafening sound used to stun prey.
The gulf between them has been filled with a deafening outcry.
The outcry when this was revealed was deafening, and the programme was dropped.
Other than that, there was complete and deafening silence.
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