\ ˈsu̇t How to pronounce soot (audio) , ˈsət, ˈsüt How to pronounce soot (audio) \

Definition of soot

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a black substance formed by combustion or separated from fuel during combustion, rising in fine particles, and adhering to the sides of the chimney or pipe conveying the smoke especially : the fine powder consisting chiefly of carbon that colors smoke


sooted; sooting; soots

Definition of soot (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to coat or cover with soot

Examples of soot in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Another important aerosol that Buizert says could show up in ice cores is soot—specifically, particulate matter of 2.5 microns in diameter or smaller, known as PM2.5. Dave Levitan, Scientific American, "Will the Earth ‘Remember’ the Coronavirus Pandemic?," 25 May 2020 In recent weeks, the EPA also has finalized a rule easing fuel-economy standards and opted to maintain existing air quality limits for soot, despite public health advocates’ arguments both requirements are too lax. Amena Saiyid,, "Trump Undermines Mercury Curbs in Move That Could End Mandate," 10 May 2020 That undermines the 2011 mercury rule and limits regulators' ability to tackle the range of soot, heavy metals, toxic gases and other hazards from fossil fuel power plants. CBS News, "Trump administration rolls back Obama-era EPA rule that curbed toxic pollutants," 16 Apr. 2020 Already blackened and sticky with soot, dust, and residue arising from millions of tourists, worshippers, and votive candles, the windows lack the yellow-powder look. Christa Lesté-lasserre, Science | AAAS, "Scientists are leading Notre Dame’s restoration—and probing mysteries laid bare by its devastating fire," 12 Mar. 2020 The burning of fossil fuels in cars and factories creates soot and other too-small-to-see particles. Akshat Rathi,, "Air Pollution’s Insidious Link to the Pandemic," 10 May 2020 Eventually, the soot settled out of the atmosphere. Nola Taylor Redd, Smithsonian Magazine, "After the Dinosaur-Killing Impact, Soot Played a Remarkable Role in Extinction," 27 Apr. 2020 Another air pollutant of concern is particulate matter, microscopic airborne particles of dust or soot that linger in the air, often from burning fossil fuels. Dennis Pillion |, al, "Air quality improves as fewer Alabamians drive during shutdowns," 26 Apr. 2020 The latest of these reviews looked at the standards for particulate-matter pollution—dust and soot categorized by size as PM2.5 (2.5 micrometers across or less) and PM10 (up to 10 micrometers). Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "EPA dings epidemiology for “uncertainty,” won’t use it for pollution standards," 15 Apr. 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


1602, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for soot


Middle English, from Old English sōt; akin to Old Irish suide soot, Old English sittan to sit

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Time Traveler for soot

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for soot

Last Updated

31 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Soot.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for soot


How to pronounce soot (audio) How to pronounce soot (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of soot

: a black powder that is formed when something (such as wood or coal) is burned


\ ˈsu̇t How to pronounce soot (audio) , ˈsət \

Kids Definition of soot

: a black powder formed when something is burned : the very fine powder that colors smoke

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More from Merriam-Webster on soot

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for soot

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with soot

Spanish Central: Translation of soot

Nglish: Translation of soot for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of soot for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about soot

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