mildew

1 of 2

noun

mil·​dew ˈmil-ˌdü How to pronounce mildew (audio)
-ˌdyü
1
a
: a superficial usually whitish growth produced especially on organic matter or living plants by fungi (as of the families Erysiphaceae and Peronosporaceae)
b
: a fungus producing mildew
2
: a discoloration caused by fungi
mildewy
ˈmil-ˌdü-ē How to pronounce mildew (audio)
-ˌdyü-
adjective

mildew

2 of 2

verb

mildewed; mildewing; mildews

transitive verb

: to affect with or as if with mildew

intransitive verb

: to become affected with mildew

Examples of mildew in a Sentence

Noun The basement's damp walls were covered with mildew.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Cracks in the walls, floors or in the basement could be indicative of bigger issues; odors could signal a mold or mildew problem. Melissa Karns, USA TODAY, 26 Jan. 2024 Employees say the Education Center, which is 70 years old, lacks working air conditioning, smells of mildew and is infested with roaches and ants. Kristen Taketa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 30 Oct. 2023 The task now for many property owners is to dry out their interior spaces and prevent further damage due to mold and mildew. Connor Sheets, Los Angeles Times, 10 Feb. 2024 This could be concerning as the cover could develop mold and mildew if it’s not wiped dry or given ample time to air dry before putting it away for storage. Sharon Brandwein, Southern Living, 6 Feb. 2024 Size: 32 oz | Use: Dissolves mold and mildew on acrylic, ceramic tile, porcelain, and corian surfaces | Scented? Cai Cramer, Peoplemag, 3 Feb. 2024 The spheres are the right size for little hands to grasp, and their tight seal prevents mold and mildew growth. Maya Polton, Parents, 17 Jan. 2024 Turn on your bathroom's exhaust fan after showering or bathing to prevent bacteria, mold, and mildew growth. Southern Living Editors, Southern Living, 7 Jan. 2024 Stuck-on mold and mildew is no match for these powerful formulas. Kaitlyn McInnis, Better Homes & Gardens, 17 Jan. 2024
Verb
Soggy drywall eventually gets replaced, only to grow damp and mildewed again within months. Curbed, 9 Jan. 2024 The Issue: Mildew If the grout is mildewed or badly stained, mix a 50/50 solution of oxygen bleach and water, and apply it with a sponge or pump-up sprayer. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, 5 Dec. 2018 Residents have reported sagging porches, mildewing wood and leaky roofs. Fox News, 30 Aug. 2018 Of course, that is a gift that expires, one that quickly mildews into a curse. Richard Lawson, vanityfair.com, 9 Oct. 2017 On a recent day, the inside walls of the home were mildewed and the clothes still in the closet were showing spots. Mimi Whitefield, miamiherald, 5 Oct. 2017 The piles up and down this street, and along many other nearby streets — shards of wallboard and mildewing carpet, artificial flowers and computer monitors — stand taller than some people. John Schwartz and Alan Blinder, New York Times, 6 Sep. 2017 For the past 20 years, my husband, Alex, and I—West Coast transplants and die-hard beach people—have spent a ridiculous amount of money to rent a mildewing summer house on the tip of Long Island. Rebecca Misner, CNT, 20 July 2017 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'mildew.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from Old English meledēaw honeydew; akin to Old High German militou honeydew

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1552, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of mildew was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near mildew

Cite this Entry

“Mildew.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/mildew. Accessed 2 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

mildew

1 of 2 noun
mil·​dew ˈmil-ˌd(y)ü How to pronounce mildew (audio)
: a usually whitish growth produced on decaying material or living plants by fungi
also : a fungus producing mildew
mildewy adjective

mildew

2 of 2 verb
: to affect with or become affected with mildew

Medical Definition

mildew

noun
mil·​dew ˈmil-ˌd(y)ü How to pronounce mildew (audio)
1
: a superficial usually whitish growth produced especially on organic matter or living plants by fungi (as of the families Erysiphaceae and Peronosporaceae)
2
: a fungus producing mildew

More from Merriam-Webster on mildew

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!