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spat·​ter ˈspa-tər How to pronounce spatter (audio)
spattered; spattering; spatters

intransitive verb

: to spurt forth in scattered drops
blood spattering everywhere

transitive verb

: to splash with or as if with a liquid
also : to soil in this way
his coat was spattered with mud
: to scatter by or as if by splashing
spatter water
: to cover with or as if with splashes or spots
: to cast aspersions on : defame
spattered my reputation


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: the act or process of spattering : the state of being spattered
: the noise of spattering
: a drop or splash spattered on something or a spot or stain due to spattering
: a small amount or number : sprinkle
a spatter of applause

Examples of spatter in a Sentence

Verb The dog jumped in the pool and spattered us with water. His clothes were spattered with paint. When you cook bacon, the grease spatters everywhere. He showed me how to use the paintbrush so the paint wouldn't spatter. Noun There were grease spatters all over the wall. The floor was covered with spatters of paint. There was a lot of paint spatter on the floor.
Recent Examples on the Web
The slaughterers, still spattered with blood, made gleeful boasts about their atrocities that were broadcast in horrific videos and quoted in news articles. Ami Ayalon, Foreign Affairs, 11 Apr. 2024 Sprays of dirt from fresh artillery strikes spattered the road. Andrew E. Kramer Finbarr O’Reilly, New York Times, 22 May 2024
Deb, first a police officer and later lieutenant, is the sister of the titular serial killer who moonlights as a blood spatter analyst for the Miami-Dade Metro Police Department. Rosy Cordero, Deadline, 17 June 2024 Each October, their town would festoon a local wildlife sanctuary with fake cobwebs and blood spatters, hiring actors to frighten trick-or-treaters on a haunted hayride through the trails. Holden Seidlitz, The New Yorker, 10 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for spatter 

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

Word History



akin to Frisian spatterje to spatter, Middle Dutch bespatten to splash

First Known Use


1600, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense


1797, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of spatter was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near spatter

Cite this Entry

“Spatter.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 verb
spat·​ter ˈspat-ər How to pronounce spatter (audio)
: to splash with drops or small bits of something wet
spatter the paper with paint
: to scatter by splashing
spattered mud all over my coat


2 of 2 noun
: the act or sound of spattering
: a drop or splash spattered on something : a spot or stain due to spattering

More from Merriam-Webster on spatter

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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