\ ˈtrash How to pronounce trash (audio) \

Definition of trash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something worth little or nothing: such as
a : junk, rubbish
b(1) : inferior or worthless writing or artistic matter (such as a television show) especially : such matter intended purely for sensational entertainment
(2) : trash talk
(3) : empty talk : nonsense
2 : a worthless person also : such persons as a group : riffraff
3 : something in a crumbled or broken condition or mass especially : debris from pruning or processing plant material


trashed; trashing; trashes

Definition of trash (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : throw away sense 1 standards of reality and truth were trashed— Edwin Diamond
4 : spoil, ruin trashing the environment
5 : to subject to criticism or invective especially : to disparage strongly a film trashed by the critics

intransitive verb

: to trash something or someone

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of trash in a Sentence


Take out the trash, please. I put the dirty diaper in the trash. I can't believe you're reading that trash. She thinks that they're all trash.


a computer program that trashes useless files The vacuum cleaner couldn't be fixed, so I trashed it. The apartment had been trashed. He says that the government's policies are trashing the environment.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Instead of tossing the packaging of your used M.A.C. products in the trash can, set them aside in a safe place. Devon Abelman, Allure, "M.A.C. Is Giving Away Free Lipstick in Exchange for Beauty Empties," 23 Apr. 2019 This is such a different time for the Clippers and Warriors from their days as fierce rivals who swung elbows, tussled and trash-talked at every chance. Janie Mccauley, The Seattle Times, "Fresh off loss at Golden State, Clippers return for playoffs," 13 Apr. 2019 If your campsite has trash cans, be sure to secure the lids as tightly as possible. Kraig Becker, Popular Mechanics, "How to Set Up Camp," 2 Apr. 2019 Some Twitter users who were upset about the ad showed photos or videos of themselves throwing their Gillette razors in trash cans or tearing them apart, using hashtags like #BoycottGillette and #GilletteFail. Aisha Al-muslim, WSJ, "Gillette’s Ad With a #MeToo Edge Gets Mixed Reactions," 17 Jan. 2019 All three appear as characters here, but the fictional story line centers on James Cagney as a trash-talking punk who turns yellow in the trenches and must redeem himself in battle. Patrick Friel, Chicago Reader, "Crime / Dance / Film / On Video / Small Screen James Cagney is more than just a tough-guy as FilmStruck's Star of the Week," 3 July 2018 Tech companies are often timid about trash-talking competitors; the industry is small enough that a competitor one day can be a partner or acquirer the next. Erin Griffith, WIRED, "The Airbnb Challenger You've Never Heard of (by Name)," 2 July 2018 The Links at Silvies Valley Ranch has custom-made, trash-talking rakes. Chadd Cripe, idahostatesman, "Goat caddies, a license to cheat and trash-talking rakes. It's all about fun at Silvies.," 11 June 2018 Even before the late writer and broadcaster became a celebrity to the general public, professional cooks revered him for the book, which depicted the hard-working, hard-partying life of the kitchen in all its trash-talking, prank-playing glory. Lisa Abend, Time, "‘We Were All in Awe of Him.’ World-Renowned Chefs Told Us Their Favorite Memories of Anthony Bourdain," 8 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Both of those accords were the result of years of painstaking diplomacy by European leaders — and Trump unilaterally trashed them., "President Trump will get red carpet treatment in UK — and big protests," 11 July 2018 Meanwhile, Thomas’s kids (Meghan’s half-siblings) continue to trash her in the press. Megan Friedman, Marie Claire, "5 Insane Stories of Family Drama Ruining Weddings," 14 May 2018 The former owner of a Mandeville-area pool supply store was arrested Tuesday (March 20) and accused of trashing the store in November, causing more than $1 million worth of damage, authorities said. Robert Rhoden,, "Former owner accused of causing $1M in damage to pool supply store," 21 Mar. 2018 Tyler Tyler has finished his diversion program, where he was placed as a result of trashing the baseball field. Chelsea Greenwood Lassman, Teen Vogue, ""13 Reasons Why" Season 2 Recap: Here's Where All the Characters Stand at the End of the Finale," 25 May 2018 Her routine has been dissected, commented on, examined, praised and trashed in hundreds of articles by seemingly everyone with a keyboard. Travis M. Andrews,, "Michelle Wolf: 'I wouldn't change a single word' of White House correspondents' dinner comedy set," 30 Apr. 2018 And pundits on the right and left rushed to demonstrate their own virtue by trashing high school students as somehow symptomatic of America’s cultural rot in the Age of Trump. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The High School Deplorables," 22 Jan. 2019 And some of its fans, apparently, can only think about trashing a new restaurant coming to town that is backed by a Curry. Langston Wertz Jr., charlotteobserver, "Why Houston Rockets fans are bashing Ayesha Curry's soon-to-open restaurant in Houston.," 21 June 2018 Trump has publicly trashed America’s partnerships and multilateral institutions, often accusing allies of taking advantage of the US. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Mattis’s resignation was a scathing indictment of Trump’s foreign policy," 21 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trash.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of trash


circa 1518, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1902, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for trash


Middle English trasch fallen leaves and twigs, perhaps of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian dialect trask rubbish; Old Norse tros fallen leaves and twigs, Old English trus

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about trash

Statistics for trash

Last Updated

2 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trash

The first known use of trash was circa 1518

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for trash



English Language Learners Definition of trash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: things that are no longer useful or wanted and that have been thrown away
: a container where people put things that are being thrown away
informal : something that is very low in quality



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

US : to throw away (something)
: to cause great damage to (something)
: to criticize (someone or something) very harshly


\ ˈtrash How to pronounce trash (audio) \

Kids Definition of trash

1 : something of little or no value that is thrown away
2 : people who deserve little respect

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on trash

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with trash

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trash

Spanish Central: Translation of trash

Nglish: Translation of trash for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trash for Arabic Speakers

Comments on trash

What made you want to look up trash? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


highly pertinent or appropriate

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!