or·​dure ˈȯr-jər How to pronounce ordure (audio)
: something that is morally degrading

Examples of ordure in a Sentence

polite people do not discuss ordure in public
Recent Examples on the Web On the face of it, packing the ordure of millions into open-air mounds is a terrible approach to a more livable planet, particularly in a part of the world where scavengers don’t comb through them for every salable scrap. Curbed, 12 Aug. 2022 Even a seemingly natural savannah, the African grasslands in the Mara-Serengeti, has benefited from the healing powers of animal ordure, produced by the livestock of human herders thousands of years ago. Bill Andrews, Discover Magazine, 29 Aug. 2018 My group first watched a video, which explained that the plant’s effluent would be released into the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, a thirty-mile-long waterway built in the late nineteenth century to rid the city of its ordure. Elizabeth Kolbert, The New York Review of Books, 9 Feb. 2022 Poking at the ordure with a stick, Cipollone pointed out the beech mast and berries on which the bear had fed. Christopher Preston, The Atlantic, 9 Apr. 2020 President Nicolás Manuro: Creating ordure out of chaos. Washington Post, 9 Aug. 2019 In gardens, the scent of frangipani carries on the damp breeze; in cities, that unmistakably Indian blend of ordure, asphalt and spice. The Economist, 27 June 2019 At the bottom of the tube sat a half-inch of what looked like frozen mud, but was, in fact, orca ordure. Kate Brooks, Smithsonian, 30 Sep. 2017 See More

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

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from ord dirty, foul, from Latin horridus horrid

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near ordure

Cite this Entry

“Ordure.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ordure. Accessed 29 Sep. 2023.

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