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

At the moment, a field is typically harvested once, and any unripe fruits or vegetables are left to rot. Nell Lewis, CNN, "Why robots will soon be picking soft fruits and salad," 4 Sep. 2019 It gets scraped into the trash in restaurants in North America, and sometimes left to rot on the vine on farms in Europe. Los Angeles Times, "1.3 billion tons of food being wasted each year. Can we stop it?," 29 Aug. 2019 After the incident, the donor said, more glass was broken, patio furniture was tipped over, sandwiches were thrown at his windows, and sushi was left to rot on his grill. Washington Post, "In 2018, they all became victims of a record-setting year of hatred in D.C.," 21 Aug. 2019 Zack Gottsagen, a man with Down syndrome, ebulliently plays Tyler’s 22-year-old sudden companion, Zak, who hides on Tyler’s boat after busting out of a nursing home where he has been left to rot and that he is forbidden to leave. Kyle Smith, National Review, "A Movie Star with Down Syndrome," 15 Aug. 2019 The great war is over now, and Lower Proszawa has been reborn, with new fancy neighborhoods springing up alongside the ruins of buildings that were shelled or merely left to rot during the long fight. Cory Doctorow, latimes.com, "Richard Kadrey's 'The Grand Dark' feels like a Tom Waits ballad in a diesel punk novel," 11 June 2019 Crushed egg shells are also great to add calcium and prevent blossom end rot, rotting that occurs at the bottom of the tomato. Joan Elovitz Kazan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "We challenged local chefs to create 6-ingredient tomato recipes. Here's what they came up with.," 20 Aug. 2019 Now the fruit is rotting inside the store, a sign of how bad business has been, Lee said. Rachel Swan, SFChronicle.com, "City says it’s back on track with long-delayed Van Ness transit project," 18 Aug. 2019 In the 21st century, tectonic shifts in the entertainment industry have undermined the decades-old assumption that cinema can be art but–PBS aside–television rots your brain. Judy Berman, Time, "With Meryl Streep on Big Little Lies, It's Time to Admit That Film and TV Are Converging," 6 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Summer appears least ideal due to the frequent rains that cause rot problems, especially in the shady sites. Tom Maccubbin, orlandosentinel.com, "Let healthy cherry tomato plants continue to produce," 24 Aug. 2019 Many had rot inside the trunk that in most cases appeared to have started with physical damage to the base of the tree. Howard Garrett, Dallas News, "Why did we lose so many trees during recent storms? Tree and soil health could be a reason," 25 June 2019 For decades, the neighborhood was known for Victorian industrial rot and the thump of acid house after dark. Vogue, "Where to Stay and Eat in London’s Renewed King’s Cross Neighborhood," 16 Sep. 2019 The mind recoils at what the eye drinks in: Radiant color swiped in exultant strokes, greedily lapped up while rot and violence abound. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "This Boston artist shunned the limelight. He deserves to be famous.," 1 Aug. 2019 Wood was stripped and repaired on the outside of the boat where rot and wear had taken its toll. Molly Korzenowski, Twin Cities, "‘Queen Mary’ returns home; private cruiser to open to the public," 27 June 2019 Initially, Markham hoped to gut, remodel and open the space in six to eight months, but the project was stymied with problems related to the aging building, including wood rot, water damage, creaking timbers, a leaky roof. Pam Kragen, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Long-delayed Windmill Food Hall set to open this weekend," 30 Aug. 2019 Wedding night in the family mansion, decked out with dumbwaiters, servants’ corridors and the smell of moral rot, turns into a lethal all-night round of hide and seek, played with executioner’s ax, crossbow, shotgun and hot tea kettle. Michael Phillips, chicagotribune.com, "‘Ready or Not’ review: I take this man as my lawful wedded husband. Now, hand me that crossbow.," 19 Aug. 2019 That is where your report ends, Director Mueller, with a scheme to cover up, obstruct and deceive every bit as systematic and pervasive as the Russian disinformation campaign itself, but far more pernicious since this rot came from within. NBC News, "Full transcript: Mueller testimony before House Judiciary, Intelligence committees," 25 July 2019

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

18 Oct 2019

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
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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More from Merriam-Webster on rot

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rot

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rot

Spanish Central: Translation of rot

Nglish: Translation of rot for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rot for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about rot

Comments on rot

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