- to roll, toss, or heave, as waves or the sea.
- to roll, writhe, or tumble about; wallow, as animals (often followed by about): pigs weltering about happily in the mud.
- to lie bathed in or be drenched in something, especially blood.
- to become deeply or extensively involved, associated, entangled, etc.: to welter in setbacks, confusion, and despair.
- a confused mass; a jumble or muddle: a welter of anxious faces.
- a state of commotion, turmoil, or upheaval: the welter that followed the surprise attack.
- a rolling, tossing, or tumbling about, as or as if by the sea, waves, or wind: They found the shore through the mighty welter.
Origin of welter1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- Informal. a welterweight boxer or wrestler.
- (of a steeplechase or hurdle race) pertaining to, or noting a race in which the horses bear welterweights.
Origin of welter2
Examples from the Web for welter
There no longer is anywhere to hide from the swelter and welter of the American id.Drug-Resistant Gonorrhea, the ‘Sex Superbug,’ Is Not Worse Than AIDS
May 7, 2013
Jon Venex plunged through the window in a welter of flying glass.The Velvet Glove
Beardsley stood numbly for a moment, struggling against a welter of panic.We're Friends, Now
Of the only effective truth in the welter of silly lies that deceived you so easily?Victory
Here her speech was lost while she delved head first into the welter.Miss Pat at School</p>
He could see nothing but vanity back of him and a welter of cost ahead.In a Little Town
- to roll about, writhe, or wallow
- (esp of the sea) to surge, heave, or toss
- to lie drenched in a liquid, esp blood
- a rolling motion, as of the sea
- a confused mass; jumble
Word Origin and History for welter
"to roll or twist," c.1300, from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German welteren "to roll," from Proto-Germanic *waltijanan (cf. Old English wieltan, Old Norse velta, Old High German walzan "to turn, revolve," German wälzen "to roll," Gothic waltjan "to roll"), from PIE root *wel- "to turn, revolve" (see volvox). The noun meaning "confused mass" is first recorded 1851.