Definition of sift
- sift flour
- sifted the evidence
- sift through a pile of old letters
- sift sugar on a cake
Sift the flour into a mixing bowl.
Sift the lumps from the sugar.
The police sifted the evidence in hopes of finding a clue.
The police sifted for clues.
The lawyer sifted through the hundreds of pages of testimony.
Firefighters sifted through the debris.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sift.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use: before 12th centurySee Words from the same year
: to put (flour, sugar, etc.) through a sifter or sieve
: to separate or remove (something) by using a sifter or sieve
: to go through (something) very carefully in order to find something useful or valuable
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