slith·​er ˈsli-t͟hər How to pronounce slither (audio)
slithered; slithering; slithers

intransitive verb

: to slide on or as if on a loose gravelly surface
: to slip or slide like a snake

transitive verb

: to cause to slide

Examples of slither in a Sentence

The snake slithered through the garden. To get under the porch, I lay on my stomach and slithered like a snake. She slithered quietly into the room. He slithered his hand around her waist.
Recent Examples on the Web Megan Thee Stallion is slithering into her next era. Ilana Kaplan, Peoplemag, 28 Oct. 2023 Cold air slithered down the gentle slopes surrounding the lakes and settled among the vines on lower lands. Dave McIntyre, Washington Post, 6 July 2023 Lionsgate’s prequel The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes slithered its way to $5.8 million Thursday previews at the domestic box office. Pamela McClintock, The Hollywood Reporter, 17 Nov. 2023 Paint Color: Little Black Dress by Behr How to Choose the Best Black Paint Colors for Bold, Beautiful Walls 07 Lover: Positively Pink by Valspar From a slithering snake to a beautiful butterfly, the Lover era marked another dramatic plot twist in the Taylor Swift narrative. Sophie Flaxman, Better Homes & Gardens, 14 July 2023 To Greeks, Beaulieu explains, snakes navigated tricky in-betweens, for their ability to slither under and above the ground. Katie Liu, Discover Magazine, 31 Oct. 2023 The alligator began slithering through the water toward the group of children. Hojun Choi, Dallas News, 14 Sep. 2023 That likely doesn’t come as a surprise to researchers, nor to anyone who’s ever watched a squirrel dart across the road to dodge an oncoming car or seen a snake slither away from a lawn mower in the grass. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 9 June 2023 Down 2-0 and 3-2 in the National League Championship Series, the Diamondbacks slithered from behind to shock the Philadelphia Phillies with two road wins to advance to their first World Series since 2001. Jorge Castillo, Los Angeles Times, 26 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'slither.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English slideren, from Old English slidrian, frequentative of slīdan to slide

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of slither was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near slither

Cite this Entry

“Slither.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


slith·​er ˈslit͟h-ər How to pronounce slither (audio)
: to slide or cause to slide on or as if on a loose gravelly surface
: to slip or slide like a snake

More from Merriam-Webster on slither

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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