rot

verb
\ ˈrät How to pronounce rot (audio) \
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 The window will only be open for two years, after which the wood will begin to deteriorate due to rot, wind blowdown and insect infestations. oregonlive, "Oregon’s Labor Day wildfires raise controversial questions about how forests are managed," 31 Oct. 2020 But the concrete traps moisture—a situation that eventually causes rot. Merle Henkenius, Popular Mechanics, "How To Make Your Own Picket Fence," 23 Oct. 2020 The imbued venom causes the victim's flesh to rot away, and some lorises have even been seen with half their faces melted off, Nekaris tells the Times. Rasha Aridi, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Cute-but-Deadly Slow Loris Reserves Its Flesh-Rotting Venom for Its Peers," 22 Oct. 2020 These wet conditions also encourage water molds, fungal-like organisms that live in the soil, to attack the roots or crown of a plant and cause rot. Dan Gill, NOLA.com, "Dan Gill explains how to mimimize landscape damage from the recent New Orleans-area heavy rains," 23 Sep. 2020 Pepper, eggplant, pumpkin, squash and watermelon also can get blossom end rot. Ellen Nibali, baltimoresun.com, "Garden Q&A: Blossom end rot on tomatoes and whether ants help," 27 Aug. 2020 These deals aren’t the enemy — cities that leave everything to the public dollar can expect a lot of rot in their parks. Sharon Grigsby, Dallas News, "As Dallas nears final vote to kill Reverchon ballpark plan, here’s how we avoid the next parks debacle," 20 Oct. 2020 Growers with surpluses can let their grapes rot on the vine, use them to make less expensive still wines, or sell them to local distilleries for less money. Michael Alberty | For The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "Coronavirus crisis bursts bubbles in Champagne, production cut in response," 25 Aug. 2020 Felling 25-year-old trees for about 35 pounds of bark was also wasteful: Up to 95 percent of their weight was being left to rot in the field. Brendan Borrell, The Atlantic, "The Tree That Could Help Stop the Pandemic," 21 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In his view, frequent lawbreaking points to systemic rot. Anna Wiener, The New Yorker, "Taking Back Our Privacy," 19 Oct. 2020 This is arguably the best cop movie of the last 20 years, a work bolstered by Spike Lee’s understanding that viewers can enjoy the heroic swagger of movie detectives while reckoning with the institutional rot that surrounds them. David Sims, The Atlantic, "In Search of the Ultimate Comfort Movie," 31 Oct. 2020 But other analysts argue that what’s happened is the symptom of a deeper rot. Washington Post, "As 2020 election nears, foreign interference matters less than a looming constitutional crisis," 27 Oct. 2020 Lozada finds the second approach more useful (the revolution will, and should, be contextualized) but leaves room for the fact that Trump has degraded us, and that some of the rot can be scraped off. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, "The Lessons of Reading Every Book About Trump," 24 Oct. 2020 Too high a temperature, coupled with morning dews and occasional rains, also encourages rot problems. Tom Maccubbin, orlandosentinel.com, "Early fall blooming is normal for nectarine trees," 17 Oct. 2020 My dwarf mondo developed a crown rot that ended up taking about half of my plants. Neil Sperry, ExpressNews.com, "Neil Sperry: Lace bugs can destroy lantanas," 24 Sep. 2020 Buell did not pass from this world without leaving behind a body of work conveying a resonant moral message that lights the way to reversing Canada’s moral rot. Michael Washburn, National Review, "Standing Up for Canada’s Most Vulnerable," 26 Sep. 2020 Mushrooms were once spurned in the West for their associations with rot. Ligaya Mishan, New York Times, "Mushrooms, the Last Survivors," 18 Sep. 2020

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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Time Traveler for rot

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for rot

Last Updated

18 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Rot.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rot. Accessed 27 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for rot

rot

verb
How to pronounce rot (audio)

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
informal + somewhat old-fashioned : foolish words or ideas

rot

verb
\ ˈrät How to pronounce rot (audio) \
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 How to pronounce rot (audio) \
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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