putrefaction

noun
pu·​tre·​fac·​tion | \ ˌpyü-trə-ˈfak-shən How to pronounce putrefaction (audio) \

Definition of putrefaction

1 : the decomposition of organic matter especially : the typically anaerobic splitting of proteins by bacteria and fungi with the formation of foul-smelling incompletely oxidized products
2 : the state of being putrefied : corruption

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Other Words from putrefaction

putrefactive \ ˌpyü-​trə-​ˈfak-​tiv How to pronounce putrefactive (audio) \ adjective

Examples of putrefaction in a Sentence

clearing the refrigerator of what the previous tenant had left behind was like taking a course in the advanced putrefaction of leftovers
Recent Examples on the Web All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019 All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019 All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019 All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019 All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019 All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019 During the saponification process, the body’s fatty acids turn into a waxy, soap-like compound that covers the corpse and prevents putrefaction. Oscar Urbiola, National Geographic, "How did 18th-century vampire hunters identify the undead? Blood and fingernails," 29 Oct. 2019 All three methods delay the process of putrefaction. The Economist, "Ikejime: a humane way to kill fish that makes them tastier," 4 Oct. 2019

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

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First Known Use of putrefaction

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for putrefaction

Middle English putrefaccion, from Late Latin putrefaction-, putrefactio, from Latin putrefacere

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Time Traveler for putrefaction

Time Traveler

The first known use of putrefaction was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Putrefaction.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/putrefaction. Accessed 8 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for putrefaction

putrefaction

noun
How to pronounce putrefaction (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of putrefaction

: the process or result of decaying

putrefaction

noun
pu·​tre·​fac·​tion | \ ˌpyü-trə-ˈfak-shən How to pronounce putrefaction (audio) \

Medical Definition of putrefaction

1 : the decomposition of organic matter especially : the typically anaerobic splitting of proteins by bacteria and fungi with the formation of foul-smelling incompletely oxidized products
2 : the state of being putrefied

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More from Merriam-Webster on putrefaction

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for putrefaction

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with putrefaction

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about putrefaction

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