- earth or other matter in fine, dry particles.
- a cloud of finely powdered earth or other matter in the air.
- any finely powdered substance, as sawdust.
- the ground; the earth's surface.
- the substance to which something, as the dead human body, is ultimately reduced by disintegration or decay; earthly remains.
- ashes, refuse, etc.
- junk1(def 1).
- a low or humble condition.
- anything worthless.
- disturbance; turmoil.
- gold dust.
- the mortal body of a human being.
- a single particle or grain.
- Archaic. money; cash.
- to wipe the dust from: to dust a table.
- to sprinkle with a powder or dust: to dust rosebushes with an insecticide.
- to strew or sprinkle (a powder, dust, or other fine particles): to dust insecticide on a rosebush.
- to soil with dust; make dusty.
- to wipe dust from furniture, woodwork, etc.
- to become dusty.
- to apply dust or powder to a plant, one's body, etc.: to dust with an insecticide in late spring.
- bite the dust,
- to be killed, especially in battle; die.
- to suffer defeat; be unsuccessful; fail: Another manufacturer has bitten the dust.
- dust off,
- Baseball.(of a pitcher) to throw the ball purposely at or dangerously close to (the batter).
- to take out or prepare for use again, as after a period of inactivity or storage: I'm going to dust off my accounting skills and try to get a job in the finance department.
- to beat up badly: The gang of hoodlums dusted off a cop.
- leave one in the dust, to overtake and surpass a competitor or one who is less ambitious, qualified, etc.: Don't be so meek, they'll leave you in the dust.
- lick the dust,
- to be killed; die.
- to humble oneself abjectly; grovel: He will resign rather than lick the dust.
- make the dust fly, to execute with vigor or speed: We turned them loose on the work, and they made the dust fly.
- shake the dust from one's feet, to depart in anger or disdain; leave decisively or in haste, especially from an unpleasant situation: As the country moved toward totalitarianism, many of the intelligentsia shook the dust from their feet.
- throw dust in someone's eyes, to mislead; deceive: He threw dust in our eyes by pretending to be a jeweler and then disappeared with the diamonds.
Origin of dust
Related Words for dustgrime, dirt, soil, powder, soot, earth, lint, sand, sift, spray, scatter, dredge, refuse, grit, smut, ashes, filth, ground, loess, cinders
Examples from the Web for dust
Contemporary Examples of dust
Estee Lauder has not crumbled to dust because the perfect brown face of Joan Smalls represents it.One Vogue Cover Doesn’t Solve Fashion’s Big Race Problem
January 2, 2015
Moreover, trucks, dust, and boomtown stress are the effects of any large-scale industrial activity.
That is a lot of air pollution, noise, and yet more kicking up of dust.
Little ricochets of dust kicked into the face of a tall man in a tan shalwar kameez and prayer cap.I Shot Bin Laden
November 16, 2014
In visible light this star system is completely shrouded in dust, its details hidden.The Most Stunning View Ever of Planets Being Born
Matthew R. Francis
November 9, 2014
Historical Examples of dust
Mauburn felt the rock foundations of Manhattan Island to be crumbling to dust.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
I'd worked wid my mouf full of dust, but could not stop to get a drink of water.Harriet, The Moses of Her People
Sarah H. Bradford
I'd level straightway with the dust, and with it sink our shame.
The making it difficult is part of the dust the Caucasian throws in his own eyes.
The object may be as small as a grain of dust or as big as a warship; to the water it is all the same.
- dry fine powdery material, such as particles of dirt, earth or pollen
- a cloud of such fine particles
- the powdery particles to which something is thought to be reduced by death, decay, or disintegration
- the mortal body of man
- the corpse of a dead person
- the earth; ground
- informal a disturbance; fuss (esp in the phrases kick up a dust, raise a dust)
- something of little or no worth
- informal (in mining parlance) silicosis or any similar respiratory disease
- short for gold dust
- ashes or household refuse
- bite the dust
- to fail completely or cease to exist
- to fall down dead
- dust and ashes something that is very disappointing
- leave someone or something in the dust to outdo someone or something comprehensively or with easeleaving their competitors in the dust
- shake the dust off one's feet to depart angrily or contemptuously
- throw dust in the eyes of to confuse or mislead
- (tr) to sprinkle or cover (something) with (dust or some other powdery substance)to dust a cake with sugar; to dust sugar onto a cake
- to remove dust by wiping, sweeping, or brushing
- archaic to make or become dirty with dust
Word Origin for dust
Word Origin and History for dust
Old English dust, from Proto-Germanic *dunstaz (cf. Old High German tunst "storm, breath," German Dunst "mist, vapor," Danish dyst "milldust," Dutch duist), from PIE *dheu- (1) "dust, smoke, vapor" (cf. Sanskrit dhu- "shake," Latin fumus "smoke"). Meaning "that to which living matter decays" was in Old English, hence, figuratively, "mortal life."
Idioms and Phrases with dust
In addition to the idiom beginning with dust
- dust off
- bite the dust
- dry as dust
- in the dust
- make the dust fly
- shake the dust from one's feet
- throw dust in someone's eyes
- watch my dust
- when the dust has settled