Simple Definition of sleuth
: someone who looks for information to solve crimes
Full Definition of sleuth
Examples of sleuth in a sentence
<the popular TV sleuth lives a much more action-packed life than do his real-world counterparts>
Origin and Etymology of sleuth
short for sleuthhound
First Known Use: 1872
Definition of sleuth
: to act as a detective : search for information
: to search for and discover
Did You Know?
They were the footprints of a gigantic hound! Those canine tracks in Arthur Conan Doyle's The Hound of the Baskervilles set the great Sherlock Holmes sleuthing on the trail of a murderer. It was a case of art imitating etymology. When Middle English speakers first borrowed sleuth from Old Norse, the term referred to "the track of an animal or person." In Scotland, a sleuthhound was a bloodhound used to hunt game or track down fugitives from justice. In 19th century U.S. English, sleuthhound became an epithet for a detective and was soon shortened to sleuth. From there, it was only a short leap to turning sleuth into a verb describing what a sleuth does.
First Known Use of sleuth
Seen and Heard
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