silt

noun
\ ˈsilt How to pronounce silt (audio) \

Definition of silt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : loose sedimentary material with rock particles usually ¹/₂₀ millimeter or less in diameter also : soil containing 80 percent or more of such silt and less than 12 percent of clay
2 : a deposit of sediment (as by a river)

silt

verb
silted; silting; silts

Definition of silt (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to become choked or obstructed with silt often used with up the channel silted up

transitive verb

: to choke, fill, cover, or obstruct with silt or mud

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Other Words from silt

Noun

silty \ ˈsil-​tē How to pronounce silt (audio) \ adjective

Verb

siltation \ sil-​ˈtā-​shən How to pronounce silt (audio) \ noun

Examples of silt in a Sentence

Verb The entrance to the creek had silted shut.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Fragile coral reefs have been threatened by the mile-long silt trails churned up as the megaships approach and depart. Washington Post, "Rough waters in Key West as city, cruise industry and state lawmakers tangle over its future," 27 Mar. 2021 Water entry and exit points must be lined with drain rock and possibly larger rocks to prevent erosion and silt movement as the water moves into and out of the garden. oregonlive, "Learn to build a Pacific Northwest rain garden," 23 Mar. 2021 Olivero-Verbal said, based on his team’s research in Colombia, once forests are cut down or burned for roads or pasture-land, soils containing heavy metals flow into creeks, with this silt eventually arriving at the sea. Andrew Wight, Forbes, "This Puerto Rican Woman In STEM Explores The Mysteries Of Mercury," 17 Mar. 2021 The Army Corps dredges more than 100,000 cubic yards of silt and sand from the harbor each year to keep it open for navigation. Katie Galioto, Star Tribune, "Duluth dredging project dumped 1970s metal shards on Park Point beach," 22 Jan. 2021 Thick stands of roseau comb out silt and sand from passing river water, dropping it on top of its dense tangles of boudin-thick roots. Tristan Baurick, NOLA.com, "Louisiana scientists say a reviled plant could save the coast's insect-ravaged wetlands," 11 Dec. 2020 It has been maintained by the silt carried by the Atchafalaya River, which is now one of the largest distributaries of the Mississippi River. Halle Parker | Staff Writer, NOLA.com, "Longtime protectors of the Atchafalaya's swamps form coalition, push to join state task force," 25 Dec. 2020 The site sits above an accident of geology: More than 5 million years ago, a rift above the San Andreas fault slowly filled with layers of silt and sediment. Michael J. Coren, Quartz, "Geothermal energy, the forgotten renewable, has finally arrived," 20 Dec. 2020 The Espro, though, has a two-filter system to take out even the finest of dregs—it’s French press coffee without the silt. Edmund Torr, Popular Science, "Best coffee maker: Five things to consider," 12 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Deep sea mining works by having vehicles on the ocean floor dig directly into the seabed, and this process releases silt, clay, and other sediments that are immediately carried away by the flow of water. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists: Sea Floor Mining Is Basically as Bad as It Sounds," 13 July 2020 One flood, and a river honey hole is now a shallow, silted-in bar. Joe Cermele, Outdoor Life, "Why I’d Rather Fish a River Than a Lake," 11 May 2020 Malacca’s port, once one of the richest on earth, silted up, and the city became a historical footnote. Hannah Beech, New York Times, "500 Years Ago, This Port Linked East to West. Its Fate Was to Fade Away.," 11 Apr. 2020 Then there is the fact that the Bridgeport Harbor hasn’t been dredged since 1964 and some of its channels have silted in. WSJ, "Connecticut’s Largest City Sees Future in Harnessing Wind Energy," 2 Feb. 2020 But in the 1860s, gold mining and timbering had begun to silt up the high mountain spawning beds, covering and suffocating their eggs. Patrick Symmes, Harper's magazine, "The $68,000 Fish," 28 Oct. 2019 But neither removes the desert of sand that still silts up the wheels of Indian commerce. The Economist, "India Inc is growing disenchanted with Narendra Modi," 17 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile, Fort Bend County Precinct 3 Commissioner Andy Meyers said crews have de-silted the channel at the north end of the county except for the portion on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) property. Karen Zurawski, Houston Chronicle, "Officials look for solutions to flooding in Katy, greater Houston area," 9 Apr. 2018 And once that soil was gone, it was gone for good, silting up the seabed and exposing the old bony rock beneath Europe’s soft topside. Bella Bathurst, Newsweek, "Kill the Plough, Save Our Soils," 29 May 2014

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1799, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for silt

Noun

Middle English cylte, probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian dialect sylt beach flooded at high tide; akin to Old High German sulza salt marsh, Old English sealt salt

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Time Traveler for silt

Time Traveler

The first known use of silt was in the 15th century

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Statistics for silt

Last Updated

30 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Silt.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/silt. Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for silt

silt

noun

English Language Learners Definition of silt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: sand, soil, mud, etc., that is carried by flowing water and that sinks to the bottom of a river, pond, etc.

silt

verb

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

: to become blocked, filled, or covered with silt
: to block, fill, or cover (something) with silt

silt

noun
\ ˈsilt How to pronounce silt (audio) \

Kids Definition of silt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : particles of small size left as sediment from water
2 : a soil made up mostly of silt and containing little clay

silt

verb
silted; silting

Kids Definition of silt (Entry 2 of 2)

: to fill, cover, or block with silt

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Comments on silt

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