straw

noun
\ ˈstrȯ How to pronounce straw (audio) \

Definition of straw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : stalks of grain after threshing broadly : dry stalky plant residue used like grain straw (as for bedding or packing)
b : a natural or artificial heavy fiber used for weaving, plaiting, or braiding
2 : a dry coarse stem especially of a cereal grass
3a(1) : something of small worth or significance
(2) : something too insubstantial to provide support or help in a desperate situation clutching at straws
4a : something (such as a hat) made of straw
b : a tube (as of paper, plastic, or glass) for sucking up a beverage
straw in the wind
: a slight fact that is an indication of a coming event

straw

adjective

Definition of straw (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : made of straw a straw hat
2 : of, relating to, or used for straw a straw barn
3 : of the color of straw : pale yellow in color straw hair
4 : of little or no value : worthless
5 : of, relating to, resembling, or being a straw man
6 : of, relating to, or concerned with the discovery of preferences by means of a straw vote

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Other Words from straw

Noun

strawy \ ˈstrȯ-​ē How to pronounce strawy (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for straw

Synonyms: Adjective

blond (or blonde), fair, flaxen, golden, sandy, tawny

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Examples of straw in a Sentence

Noun

He was chewing on a straw. He asked for a straw for his iced tea. She drank the juice through a straw.

Adjective

the cheese maker told us that the best Parmesan cheeses are straw, not white, in color
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

On a sunny Sunday stroll through Beacon, a couple of ramblers are wearing straw trilbies in the farmers’ market. James Sullivan, BostonGlobe.com, "A tip of the hat to history," 3 Sep. 2019 Modern scarecrows are a drastic departure from the straw buddy from The Wizard of Oz. David Wilson, Smithsonian, "These High-Tech Scarecrows Will Keep Pesky Creatures Away," 3 Sep. 2019 Everyone grabs for their tottering beverages, trying desperately to prevent spritzes and garnishes and straws (paper, natch) from making contact with summer whites. Amiel Stanek, Bon Appétit, "This 20-Cent Wedge of Plastic Will Make You a Restaurant Hero," 26 Aug. 2019 For example, cattle prefer to lie on wood chips while sheep and goats prefer straw. Zekriah Chaudhry, Twin Cities, "State Fair: Getting the animals in and out like a choreographed dance," 25 Aug. 2019 Criminal networks, like those in the scamming industry, also turn to straw buyers in the United States — people who purchase the guns legally and send them to Jamaica, either complicit, misled or uninterested in how they are used. Azam Ahmed, New York Times, "One Handgun, 9 Murders: How American Firearms Cause Carnage Abroad," 25 Aug. 2019 While 4-year-old gelding Kylemore is out on the track, Aguilar cleans the stall and hefts a 100-pound bale of hay with a pitchfork to add new straw. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Day in the life of a groom on the Del Mar backstretch," 24 Aug. 2019 Police found inside the purse: Alprazolam pills, Xanax pills, suspected crack cocaine, one pill cutter, one straw with white residue, and one syringe plunger, according to the statement. Mary Grace Keller, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Westminster woman charged with intent to distribute after police allegedly find narcotics in her purse, rectum," 23 Aug. 2019 Both suits alleged Walmart should have known the gun used in the slayings involved a straw purchase, where the buyer is purchasing the gun for another person. Kate Gibson, CBS News, "Walmart and other retailers face a new front on gun sales: Lawsuits," 23 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The nation's largest auto finance company has dropped its lawsuit against auto dealer Russ Darrow over loans to what turned out to be straw buyers of luxury vehicles destined for China via a con man's business. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Finance firm drops suit against Russ Darrow dealership over straw buyers for fugitive con man," 24 Apr. 2018 The nation's largest auto finance company has dropped its lawsuit against auto dealer Russ Darrow over loans to what turned out to be straw buyers of luxury vehicles destined for China via a con man's business. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Finance firm drops suit against Russ Darrow dealership over straw buyers for fugitive con man," 24 Apr. 2018 Straw bags with pom-pom accents are sure to please. NOLA.com, "4 cool new shops and galleries to discover around New Orleans," 8 July 2017 Straw blinds go up to the ceiling, concealing the fact that the windows are much shorter. Lisa Cregan, House Beautiful, "An Empty "White Cube" Apartment Gets Its Masterpiece Theatre Moment," 19 Jan. 2017

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

Noun

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for straw

Noun

Middle English, from Old English strēaw; akin to Old High German strō straw, Old English strewian to strew

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Statistics for straw

Last Updated

6 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for straw

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

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More Definitions for straw

straw

noun

English Language Learners Definition of straw

: the dry stems of wheat and other grain plants
: a single dry stem of a grain plant
: a thin tube used for sucking up a drink

straw

noun
\ ˈstrȯ How to pronounce straw (audio) \

Kids Definition of straw

1 : dry plant stems (as of grain after threshing) a mat of straw
2 : a slender tube for sucking up a beverage

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More from Merriam-Webster on straw

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with straw

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for straw

Spanish Central: Translation of straw

Nglish: Translation of straw for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of straw for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about straw

Comments on straw

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