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 silty (audio) \ adjective

Verb

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

Examples of silt in a Sentence

Verb

The entrance to the creek had silted shut.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Dundon cut down its size by shoveling silt over the pile, and by October, the heap’s core was ashes, the fire out. Los Angeles Times, "Tim Dundon, ‘Guru of Doo Doo,’ whose compost nourished Altadena’s gardens, dies at 77," 6 Aug. 2019 The buildings were created through a process called silt casting, which used earthen forms as scaffolding to pour concrete. Bon Appétit, "A Photo Tour of Arcosanti, the Utopian Oasis in the Arizona Desert," 27 June 2019 The first glacier that came into view was the Tokositna, a dramatic ribbon of ice feathered with crevasses and streaked with dark silt. Anchorage Daily News, "Taking the plunge: Glacier skiing and climbing in the shadow of the Moose’s Tooth," 10 June 2019 The Harris County Flood Control District will be conducting a maintenance project to remove silt from the upstream portion of Taylor Gully in Kingwood. Kaila Contreras, Houston Chronicle, "Harris County to improve drainage near Elm Grove in Kingwood after May floods," 22 July 2019 Peyto Lake in Canada’s Banff National Park is shockingly blue thanks to meltwater and silt from the Peyto Glacier and the Wapta Icefields nearby. Matt Mcnulty, PEOPLE.com, "Instagram Influencers Flocking to Toxic Bright Blue Lake as Government Warns Stay Away," 10 July 2019 Yet hundreds of thousands of streams dump silt into our reservoirs and harbors. Hubert H. (hubert Horatio) Humphrey, Harper's magazine, "Into the Woods," 10 June 2019 At various points, every acequia also boasts a number of channels through which water can be diverted back to the river to ensure silt and rocks don’t block the channels. Robert Neuwirth, National Geographic, "Centuries-old irrigation system shows how to manage scarce water," 17 May 2019 As rising global temperatures melt Greenland’s glaciers, more silt, sand, and other sediment are being deposited on its shores. Mary Hui, Quartz, "Singapore needs sand, but its neighbors refuse to sell," 4 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

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 Elsewhere in the state, a smattering of farmers are trying other techniques for capturing nitrate—collecting it in engineered wetlands on their soggier fields, for example, or in silted-in oxbow river bends excavated to hold more water. National Geographic, "The Simple River-Cleaning Tactics That Big Farms Ignore," 7 Dec. 2017 Soon, piers and warehouses were abandoned, General Electric was poisoning the Hudson with PCBs and the East River had silted up and become a de facto dump, with rusted cars clustering around the base of the Brooklyn Bridge. Gina Levay, Smithsonian, "How New York City Is Rediscovering Its Maritime Spirit," 29 May 2017 In the end, the studies showed that changes in the tide dynamics would be detrimental to the environment — and that the barrages would silt up very quickly. Nancy Lord, Alaska Dispatch News, "Fascinating book on tides includes Alaska," 12 Aug. 2017 Soon, piers and warehouses were abandoned, General Electric was poisoning the Hudson with PCBs and the East River had silted up and become a de facto dump, with rusted cars clustering around the base of the Brooklyn Bridge. Gina Levay, Smithsonian, "How New York City Is Rediscovering Its Maritime Spirit," 2 May 2017

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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Dictionary Entries near silt

Silphidae

silphium

sils

silt

siltage

silt loam

silt soil

Statistics for silt

Last Updated

27 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for silt

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

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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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More from Merriam-Webster on silt

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with silt

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for silt

Spanish Central: Translation of silt

Nglish: Translation of silt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of silt for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about silt

Comments on silt

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