smelt

noun
\ˈsmelt \
plural smelts or smelt

Definition of smelt 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: any of a family (Osmeridae) of small bony fishes that closely resemble the trouts in general structure, live along coasts and ascend rivers to spawn or are landlocked, and have delicate oily flesh with a distinctive odor and taste

smelt

verb
smelted; smelting; smelts

Definition of smelt (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to melt or fuse (a substance, such as ore) often with an accompanying chemical change usually to separate the metal

2 : refine, reduce

Examples of smelt in a Sentence

Verb

the process used for smelting iron ore

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Rainbow smelt, which reached Lake Michigan in 1923, was the first major exotic species to take hold. Jim Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee loves its rivers and Lake Michigan — and keeps abusing them, too," 3 July 2018 The pumps chomp up all manner of fish, including salmon and endangered tiny native smelt. George Skelton, latimes.com, "What do Southern Californians really get out of Gov. Jerry Brown's twin tunnels project?," 12 July 2018 The Brown Administration said the tunnel system would deliver more water to Southern California and prevent smelt and other fish from being sucked into pipes. Peter Fimrite, San Francisco Chronicle, "California’s two-tunnel Delta project is back on track with SoCal water district’s vote," 10 Apr. 2018 State biologists have found hardly any Delta smelt in their sampling nets in the past two years. Ryan Sabalow And Dale Kasler, sacbee, "These fish are at the heart of California's water debate. But extinction could be close," 1 June 2018 No sport-dipping for smelt this winter; numbers are too low There will be no sport smelt-dipping in Washington or Oregon this year. Bill Monroe, OregonLive.com, "Washington opens two-day dig in daylight dusk this weekend," 13 Mar. 2018 The numbers of Chinook salmon haven't rebounded since the drought was declared over, and the tiny Delta smelt continues its possibility irreversible march toward extinction. Dale Kasler, sacbee, "California has a new plan for allocating its water, and it means less for farmers," 6 July 2018 In addition, populations of cisco (also called lake herring), one of the major prey items for lake trout, were displaced by non-native alewife and rainbow smelt. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Smith: There's no point in rushing when there's a big laker on the line," 28 Apr. 2018 Consecutive surveys in late April and early May found no smelt at all. Ryan Sabalow And Dale Kasler, sacbee, "These fish are at the heart of California's water debate. But extinction could be close," 1 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Iron that comes from meteorites has a higher nickel content than iron dug up from the ground and smelted by humans. Jonathan Schifman, Popular Mechanics, "The Entire History of Steel," 9 July 2018 But smelting iron in the colonies destroyed business for the ironworks in England. Jonathan Schifman, Popular Mechanics, "The Entire History of Steel," 9 July 2018 Others had tried smelting iron with coal, but Darby was the first to roast the coal before smelting. Jonathan Schifman, Popular Mechanics, "The Entire History of Steel," 9 July 2018 Thousands of years ago, when the ancient Greek and Roman empires ruled over Europe, lead was mined and smelted to produce water pipes and ship sheathing, for example. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, "Secrets in the ice: Pollution in Greenland reveals rise and fall of ancient European civilizations," 14 May 2018 Two thousand years ago, the Romans smelted precious ores in clay furnaces, extracting silver and belching lead into the sky. Katie Langin, Science | AAAS, "Top stories: HPV vaccine debate, 2000-year-old pollution, and a lawmaker’s views on sea level rise," 18 May 2018 When smelting silver, adding lead to the crushed ore helps concentrate the silver. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Greenland ice cores track Roman lead pollution in year-by-year detail," 15 May 2018 Elysis will also have U.S. investments, including funding to support a supply chain for the advanced conductive materials used to smelt the aluminum. Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY, "Apple tries to reduce emissions from making iPhones with green aluminum venture," 10 May 2018 Bauxite is a clay rock that is refined to produce aluminum hydroxide, or alumina, which is then smelted to produce primary aluminum (secondary aluminum comes from recycled scrap). Greg Ip, WSJ, "The Flaw in Trump’s National Security Tariffs Logic," 9 Mar. 2018

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1543, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for smelt

Noun

Middle English, from Old English; akin to Norwegian smelte whiting

Verb

Dutch or Low German smelten; akin to Old High German smelzan to melt, Old English meltan — more at melt

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Dictionary Entries near smelt

smell trouble

smell up

smelly

smelt

smelter

smelterman

Smetana

Statistics for smelt

Last Updated

24 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for smelt

The first known use of smelt was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for smelt

smelt

noun

English Language Learners Definition of smelt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a type of small fish that can be eaten

smelt

verb

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

: to melt rock that contains metal in order to get the metal out

smelt

noun
\ˈsmelt \
plural smelts or smelt

Kids Definition of smelt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small silvery fish that is sometimes used for food

smelt

verb
smelted; smelting

Kids Definition of smelt (Entry 2 of 2)

: to melt (as ore) in order to separate the metal : refine

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