1

sallow

play
noun sal·low \ˈsa-(ˌ)lō\

Definition of sallow

  1. :  any of several Old World broad-leaved willows (such as Salix caprea) including important sources of charcoal and tanbark

sallow was our Word of the Day on 03/26/2014. Hear the podcast!

Origin and Etymology of sallow

Middle English, from Old English sealh; akin to Old High German salha sallow, Latin salix willow


First Known Use: before 12th century

Other Seed Plant Terms


2

sallow

adjective sal·low

Definition of sallow

  1. :  of a grayish greenish yellow color

sallowish

play \ˈsa-lə-wish\ adjective

sallowness

play \ˈsa-lō-nəs, -lə-\ noun

Examples of sallow in a Sentence

  1. he was still a bit sallow after a week spent in bed with the flu

Did You Know?

There is no hint of sickliness in the etymology of sallow. The word appears in Old English as salu or salo, and could mean "dusky" or "dark" or "grayish greenish yellow." Salu (or salo) is akin to Old English sōl ("dark, dirty"), Old High German salo ("murky, dirty gray"), Old Norse sölr ("dirty"), and even Sanskrit sāra or sāla, which carries the basic meaning of "dirty gray." Sallow, however, has for much of its history been used specifically to describe the skin or complexion of one who is unwell.

Origin and Etymology of sallow

Middle English salowe, from Old English salu; akin to Old High German salo murky, Russian solovyĭ yellowish gray


First Known Use: before 12th century


SALLOW Defined for English Language Learners

sallow

adjective

Definition of sallow for English Language Learners

  • : slightly yellow in a way that does not look healthy


SALLOW Defined for Kids

sallow

play
adjective sal·low \ˈsa-lō\

Definition of sallow for Students

  1. :  slightly yellow in a way that does not look healthy His hair was short and wild …, his face starved and sallow with grief. — Louise Erdrich, The Birchbark House



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