rot

verb
\ ˈrät \
rotted; rotting

Definition of rot 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to undergo decomposition from the action of bacteria or fungi

b : to become unsound or weak (as from use or chemical action)

2a : to go to ruin : deteriorate

b : to become morally corrupt : degenerate

transitive verb

: to cause to decompose or deteriorate with or as if with rot

rot

noun

Definition of rot (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the process of rotting : the state of being rotten : decay

b : something rotten or rotting

2a archaic : a wasting putrescent disease

b : any of several parasitic diseases especially of sheep marked by necrosis and wasting

c : plant disease marked by breakdown of tissues and caused especially by fungi or bacteria

3 : nonsense often used interjectionally

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Choose the Right Synonym for rot

Verb

decay, decompose, rot, putrefy, spoil mean to undergo destructive dissolution. decay implies a slow change from a state of soundness or perfection. a decaying mansion decompose stresses a breaking down by chemical change and when applied to organic matter a corruption. the strong odor of decomposing vegetation rot is a close synonym of decompose and often connotes foulness. fruit was left to rot in warehouses putrefy implies the rotting of animal matter and offensiveness to sight and smell. corpses putrefying on the battlefield spoil applies chiefly to the decomposition of foods. keep the ham from spoiling

Examples of rot in a Sentence

Verb

The wood had rotted away. The apples were left to rot. the smell of rotting garbage Eating too much candy can rot your teeth.

Noun

They found a lot of rot in the house's roof. That's a lot of rot!
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

One day, without a burn permit, my father set that rotting pile ablaze, and the 150-year-old structure was a mound of white ash by sundown. Liz Arnold, Longreads, "Making Peace with the Site of a Suicide," 11 July 2018 So while the upper layer of soil was indeed dry, the roots were rotting in constantly saturated soil. Kenneth Setzer, miamiherald, "Houseplant advice for the millennial (or anyone) who doesn’t have a green thumb," 11 July 2018 Its 45-year-old structures, many of which were rotting and porous, have been repaired and improved by Amish craftsmen. Frank Fitzpatrick, Philly.com, "Muhammad Ali's secluded Pa. camp and the fight to save it, led by John Madden's son," 3 July 2018 Tests revealed parts of his larynx were necrotising - or rotting - and excess fluid was collecting in the voice box. Andrea Downey, Fox News, "Man's throat began to rot after he mistakenly swallowed bleach tablet," 25 June 2018 Often, these stems start to decline, which can result in crown rot and death of the plants. Tom Maccubbin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "How to treat blossom-end rot," 9 June 2018 Cheese is vulnerable to mold, rot, and maggots, not to mention pitfalls like excess salt. Gordon Edgar, Smithsonian, "A Brief History of America’s Appetite for Macaroni and Cheese," 30 May 2018 But if there’s too much water, plants can rot, so Raposo suggests emptying water in the pots monthly. Karen Dardick, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Bromeliads create garden drama," 17 May 2018 The kitchen cabinets were molding and rotting away, the toilets weren't attached, and the whole house stank of animal urine and mold. Steve Heisler, Chicago Reader, "The blog Two Flat: Remade chronicles one family’s ten-year struggle to rehab a maggot-infested fixer-upper in Logan Square," 15 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Plants grown in the ground rarely have blossom-end rot locally. Tom Maccubbin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "How to treat blossom-end rot," 9 June 2018 Saving plants in containers means keeping them in high light levels but out of the daily rains, which encourage rot. Tom Maccubbin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Summer heat, rain not kind to geraniums," 30 June 2018 And children lose parents, and parents lose children, and everything rots from within. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "Donald Trump paints the border as a lawless hellhole. But so does American pop culture.," 22 June 2018 The denser the arrangement, the longer the fruit can resist rot. Matt Simon, WIRED, "The Amphiphilic Liquid Coating That Keeps Your Avocados Fresh," 21 June 2018 John, John, the fish rots from the head, is that the saying? Fox News, "Ingraham: A borderless world," 21 June 2018 In the 1800s, for example, a single clone of the Irish lumper potato fed Ireland's growing population until a rot wiped it out, devastating the island's people and economy. Rebecca Albright, Scientific American, "Scientists Are Taking Extreme Steps to Help Corals Survive," 1 Jan. 2018 Not Giving Them Enough Calcium Discovering all of your tomatoes are developing blossom end rot can be a huge disappointment. Rebecca Straus, Good Housekeeping, "6 Tomato-Growing Mistakes You're Making," 11 Aug. 2016 But Flynn’s also at her most righteous in Sharp Objects, fiddling with the all-American—cheerleading, day-drinking, hunting practice—to seek the rot within. Sonia Saraiya, HWD, "Sharp Objects Is Stunning, Raw, and Violently Beautiful," 5 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rot.' 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 rot

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Noun

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

History and Etymology for rot

Verb

Middle English roten, from Old English rotian; akin to Old High German rōzzēn to rot

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Learn More about rot

Dictionary Entries near rot

rosy finch

rosy gull

rosy periwinkle

rot

rota

Rota

rotacism

Statistics for rot

Last Updated

6 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rot

The first known use of rot was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for rot

rot

verb

English Language Learners Definition of rot

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to slowly decay or cause (something) to decay

rot

noun

English Language Learners Definition of rot (Entry 2 of 2)

: the process of rotting or the condition that results when something rots

: foolish words or ideas

rot

verb
\ ˈrät \
rotted; rotting

Kids Definition of rot

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to undergo decay

2 : to go to ruin He was left to rot in jail.

rot

noun

Kids Definition of rot (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the process of decaying : the state of being decayed

2 : something that has decayed or is decaying

\ ˈrät \
rotted; rotting

Medical Definition of rot 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: to undergo decomposition from the action of bacteria or fungi

rot

noun

Medical Definition of rot (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the process of rotting : the state of being rotten

2 : any of several parasitic diseases especially of sheep marked by necrosis and wasting

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Comments on rot

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