\ ˈblīt How to pronounce blight (audio) \

Definition of blight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 botany
a : a disease or injury of plants marked by the formation of lesions, withering, and death of parts (such as leaves and tubers) potato blight
b : an organism (such as an insect or a fungus) that causes blight
2 : something that frustrates plans or hopes the blight of poverty an abandoned factory that was a blight on the neighborhood
3 : something that impairs or destroys … censorship … has brought under its blight Ireland's greatest poets, dramatists, and scholars.— Paul Blanshard
4 : a deteriorated condition urban blight


blighted; blighting; blights

Definition of blight (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 botany : to affect (a plant) with a disease or injury marked by the formation of lesions, withering, and death of parts (such as leaves and tubers) : to affect with blight (see blight entry 1 sense 1) The apple trees were blighted by fungus.
2 : to impair the quality or effect of the condition that has blighted his son's life— Patricia Guthrie

intransitive verb

botany : to suffer from or become affected with blight The potatoes blighted.

Examples of blight in a Sentence

Noun the city's spreading urban blight the expanding urban sprawl is a blight on the countryside Verb Builders blighted the land with malls and parking lots.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun According to DeKalb County, a task force was never put in place to address issues at Brannon Hill specifically but a Blight Task Force looks at the status of blight throughout the county and studies the nature of the problem. Jozsef Papp, ajc, 9 May 2022 Alas, the system has broken down, leaving a form of blight to sweep the world — devastating crops and corrupting the animallike machines that were once caretakers of the land. Washington Post, 19 Feb. 2022 The city, under state law, must bring in a third party to conduct the blight study. cleveland, 8 Feb. 2022 In addition to supporting Jacobs’ razing of mostly squalid motels, the city used its blight fund in 2016 to finance the demolition of two vacant motels despite pleas from the community to preserve them as housing. Anjeanette Damon, ProPublica, 4 Feb. 2022 In recent years, council members have shown their support for some of Duggan's platform, including the blight bond proposal to raise funds for demolitions of crumbling structures. Dana Afana, Detroit Free Press, 4 Nov. 2021 And, just as researchers had hoped, grafting edible pears onto Callery roots produced blight-resistant fruit trees. CBS News, 22 Apr. 2022 The neighborhood, which is just west of Martin Luther King Boulevard, has long suffered from blight, and city leaders targeted it for redevelopment more than two decades ago. Giacomo Bologna, Baltimore Sun, 12 Apr. 2022 Put callously, the extent of killing, deprivation and humanitarian blight that the country can stand may shape the government's position on ceasefire negotiations. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 17 Mar. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb And these avatars certainly capture ABBA’s original exuberance, minus the Jurassic tendencies that tend to blight decades-after-the-fact reunions in the real world. Mark Sutherland, Variety, 27 May 2022 Baltimore Housing Commissioner Alice Kennedy praised the mayor for his commitment to blight prevention and pledged to keep working diligently to address the nearly 15,000 vacant houses in Baltimore. Lea Skene, Baltimore Sun, 12 May 2022 Challenges are based on worries that the vast arrays of turbines will interfere with fishing, obstruct naval exercises and blight views from summer houses. New York Times, 22 Mar. 2022 In the clinical world, consistency is king; gaps in data can blight the reliability of any takeaways, or beleaguer analysis. Grace Browne, Wired, 14 Mar. 2022 Doping allegations continue to blight Russia’s race-walking program—17 of its athletes have been banned for doping in the past few years—even as athletes from the program have dominated the world championships and Olympics. The Editors, Outside Online, 15 Jan. 2015 Tent encampments still blight cities, however, and many voters equate them with crime. George Skelton, Los Angeles Times, 18 Feb. 2022 In my experience, few things blight a career as much as a failed software implementation. Mark Robinson, Forbes, 5 Oct. 2021 However, Camilla is also acutely aware of the challenges that blight gardeners’ efforts. Victoria Murphy, Town & Country, 19 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'blight.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of blight


1578, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1695, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for blight


of obscure origin


verbal derivative of blight entry 1

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Last Updated

16 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Blight.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for blight


\ ˈblīt How to pronounce blight (audio) \

Kids Definition of blight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a disease that makes parts of plants dry up and die


blighted; blighting

Kids Definition of blight (Entry 2 of 2)

: to injure or destroy by or as if by a blight Huge signs blighted the landscape.


\ ˈblīt How to pronounce blight (audio) \

Medical Definition of blight

: an inflammation of the eye in which the eyelids discharge a thick mucous substance that often seals them up for days and minute granular pustules develop inside the lid

called also sandy blight

More from Merriam-Webster on blight

Nglish: Translation of blight for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of blight for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about blight


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