Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

putrefy

play
verb pu·tre·fy \ˈpyü-trə-ˌfī\

Simple Definition of putrefy

  • : to be slowly destroyed by natural processes : to rot and become putrid

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of putrefy

putrefied

putrefying

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to make putrid

  3. intransitive verb
  4. :  to undergo putrefaction

Examples of putrefy in a sentence

  1. <we traced the bad smell to a dead skunk putrefying under the house>



Origin and Etymology of putrefy

Middle English putrefien, from Middle French & Latin; Middle French putrefier, from Latin putrefacere, from putrēre to be rotten + facere to make — more at do


First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of putrefy

decay, decompose, rot, putrefy, spoil mean to undergo destructive dissolution. decay implies a slow change from a state of soundness or perfection <a decaying mansion>. decompose stresses a breaking down by chemical change and when applied to organic matter a corruption <the strong odor of decomposing vegetation>. rot is a close synonym of decompose and often connotes foulness <fruit was left to rot in warehouses>. putrefy implies the rotting of animal matter and offensiveness to sight and smell <corpses putrefying on the battlefield>. spoil applies chiefly to the decomposition of foods <keep the ham from spoiling>.

Other Biochemistry Terms

Rhymes with putrefy

abide by, Adonai, alibi, alkali, amplify, apple-pie, argufy, assegai, azo dye, basify, beautify, butterfly, by-and-by, caddis fly, calcify, certify, Chou En-lai, citify, clarify, classify, coalify, cockneyfy, codify, college try, cottage pie, crucify, cut-and-try, cutie-pie, DIY, damnify, damselfly, dandify, deify, densify, dignify, dobsonfly, do-or-die, dragonfly, dulcify, eagle eye, edify, evil eye, falsify, fancify, fortify, frenchify, fructify, gasify, Gemini, gentrify, glorify, goggle-eye, goldeneye, gratify, Haggai, harvest fly, hexerei, high and dry, hip and thigh, Hokusai, hook and eye, horrify, hoverfly, humble pie, Iceni, justify, kiss good-bye, lazy eye, lignify, liquefy, lithify, Lorelei, lullaby, Madurai, magnify, Malachi, Maracay, minify, modify, mollify, Molokai, Mordecai, mortify, multi-ply, multiply, mummify, mystify, nazify, notify, nullify, occupy, old school tie, on standby, on the fly, ossify, overbuy, overfly, overlie, pacify, Paraguay, passerby, peccavi, petrify, PPI, preachify, prettify, private eye, prophesy, purify, qualify, quantify, ramify, rarefy, ratify, RBI, rectify, reify, res gestae, robber fly, runner's high, Russify, samurai, sanctify, satisfy, scarify, schwarmerei, semidry, set store by, shepherd's pie, shoofly pie, signify, simplify, Spanish fly, specify, speechify, stratify, stultify, stupefy, sweetie pie, Tenebrae, terrify, testify, tie-and-dye, tigereye, Trans Alai, tumble dry, typify, uglify, underlie, unify, Uruguay, Veneti, verify, versify, vilify, vinify, vitrify, vivify, weather eye, Windsor tie, xanthene dye, yuppify, zombify


Medical Dictionary

putrefy

play
verb pu·tre·fy \ˈpyü-trə-ˌfī\

Medical Definition of putrefy

putrefied

;

putrefying

  1. transitive verb

  2. :  to make putrid

  3. intransitive verb

  4. :  to undergo putrefaction




Learn More about putrefy


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up putrefy? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to take off or remove

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

lavender-fields-in-france

Which of these is a synonym of caesura?

interruption torrent megillah rebellion
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ