sweat

1 of 2

verb

sweat or sweated; sweating

intransitive verb

1
a
: to excrete moisture in visible quantities through the openings of the sweat glands : perspire
b
: to labor or exert oneself so as to cause perspiration
2
a
: to emit or exude moisture
cheese sweats in ripening
b
: to gather surface moisture in beads as a result of condensation
stones sweat at night
c(1)
(2)
3
: to undergo anxiety or mental or emotional distress
sweat through final exams
4
: to become exuded through pores or a porous surface : ooze

transitive verb

1
: to emit or seem to emit from pores : exude
2
: to manipulate or produce by hard work or drudgery
3
: to get rid of or lose (weight) by or as if by sweating or being sweated
4
: to make wet with perspiration
5
a
: to cause to excrete moisture from the skin
b
: to drive hard : overwork
c
: to exact work from at low wages and under unfair or unhealthful conditions
d
slang : to give the third degree to
6
: to cause to exude or lose moisture
especially : to subject (something, such as tobacco leaves) to fermentation
7
a
: to extract something valuable from by unfair or dishonest means : fleece
b
: to remove particles of metal from (a coin) by abrasion
8
a
: to heat (something, such as solder) so as to melt and cause to run especially between surfaces to unite them
also : to unite by such means
sweat a pipe joint
b
: to heat so as to extract an easily fusible constituent
sweat bismuth ore
c
: to sauté in a covered vessel until natural juices are exuded
9
slang : to worry about
doesn't sweat the small stuffBarry McDermott

sweat

2 of 2

noun

1
: hard work : drudgery
2
: the fluid excreted from the sweat glands of the skin : perspiration
3
: moisture issuing from or gathering in drops on a surface
4
a
: the condition of one sweating or sweated
b
: a spell of sweating
5
: a state of anxiety or impatience
6
sweats plural
Phrases
sweat blood
: to work or worry intensely
in preparing speeches each sweats blood in his own wayStewart Cockburn
no sweat
slang
: with little or no difficulty : easily
also : easy
often used interjectionally

Examples of sweat in a Sentence

Verb He sweats a lot when he exercises. They sweated and saved so their children could go to college. We'll let them sweat a while longer. We'll let them sweat it out for a while longer. “The car won't start—what are we going to do?” “Don't sweat it. I know all about fixing cars.” Noun We were drenched in sweat after the workout. The runners were dripping with sweat. Her forehead was covered with beads of sweat. It took a lot of sweat and toil to build the house. We helped them not with money but with our blood and sweat.
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Humidity can be key: Humans keep their core cool by sweating and shedding heat produced by their bodies. Evan Bush, NBC News, 11 July 2024 Grocery inflation is slowing, and the companies that make the food are starting to sweat. Aaron Gregg, Washington Post, 11 July 2024
Noun
In Death Valley, the air is so dry that sweat evaporates very easily, unlike in humid climates where the atmosphere contains more moisture. Noah Haggerty, Los Angeles Times, 11 July 2024 The lightweight fabric wicks away sweat and provides UPF 50+ protection against the sun. Susan Brickell, Travel + Leisure, 11 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for sweat 

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English sweten, from Old English swǣtan, from swāt sweat; akin to Old High German sweiz sweat, Latin sudare to sweat, Greek hidrōs sweat

First Known Use

Verb

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near sweat

Cite this Entry

“Sweat.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sweat. Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

sweat

1 of 2 verb
sweat or sweated; sweating
1
: to give off salty moisture through the pores of the skin : perspire
2
: to give off or cause to give off moisture
3
: to collect drops of moisture on the surface
a pitcher of ice water sweats on a hot day
4
a
: to undergo anxiety or stress
sweated through the test
b
slang : to worry about
5
: to get rid of or lose by perspiring
sweat off weight
6
: to work very hard

sweat

2 of 2 noun
1
: hard work
2
: moisture coming from the sweat glands of the skin : perspiration
3
: moisture gathering in drops on a surface

Medical Definition

sweat

1 of 2 intransitive verb
sweat or sweated; sweating
: to excrete moisture in visible quantities through the opening of the sweat glands : perspire

sweat

2 of 2 noun
1
: the fluid excreted from the sweat glands of the skin : perspiration
2
: abnormally profuse sweating
often used in plural
soaking sweats
sweaty adjective
sweatier; sweatiest

More from Merriam-Webster on sweat

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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