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.
a low or humble condition.
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.
Idioms about dust
bite the dust,
to be killed, especially in battle; die.
to suffer defeat; be unsuccessful; fail: Another manufacturer has bitten the dust.
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.
- dustless, adjective
- re·dust, verb (used with object)
- un·dust·ed, adjective
- well-dusted, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use dust in a sentence
Each night, when he finished, his body was caked in the dust from the crushed bones and stank of the landfill.
This mercury eventually reaches the sea in rain, dust, and runoff from rivers and estuaries.Researchers found signs of human pollution in animals living six miles beneath the sea | Kate Baggaley | November 19, 2020 | Popular-Science
Williams had to pick herself up, dust herself off and try harder next time.Losing gracefully is one of the most important lessons from playing sports | Fred Bowen | November 18, 2020 | Washington Post
Because the process happens in an enclosed environment, Mighty can also re-capture dust during the milling process to re-use that material in future printing.A new material allows this company to 3D print most of a house in a single day | Stan Horaczek | November 18, 2020 | Popular-Science
This long-distance dust could explain much of the bonus melting of Himalayan snows and ice, his team now reports.Surprising long-haul dust and tar are melting high glaciers | Sid Perkins | November 17, 2020 | Science News For Students
But Obamacare picked itself up and dusted itself off surprisingly well.You Were Wrong About Miley & Bitcoin: 2014’s Failed Predictions | Nina Strochlic | December 31, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Other versions are coated in marzipan, or dusted in powder sugar.One Cake to Rule Them All: How Stollen Stole Our Hearts | Molly Hannon | December 24, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
The searing winds and dusted Afghan sky reminded me of Iraq.
Stewed apples, dusted with cinnamon, are an ideal companion to spicy food.Charlottesville Is Swimming in Finger Lickin’ Gas Station Fried Chicken | Jane & Michael Stern | May 26, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
But in some states, creative lawyers have dusted them off and left adult children reeling.Are You Legally Responsible for Your Elderly Parents? | Keli Goff | April 26, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Mrs. Gum dusted a large old-fashioned oak chair with her apron; but he perched himself on one of its elbows.Elster's Folly | Mrs. Henry Wood
Finally, her labors over, she dusted an aged rocking-chair and sat down, fanning herself with her hat.Ancestors | Gertrude Atherton
This exquisite powder is to be dusted over the face, and, being perfectly harmless, may be used as often as necessity requires.The Ladies' Book of Etiquette, and Manual of Politeness | Florence Hartley
Um-ko lifted them, dusted the velvet thongs, and placed them with mathematical precision side by side upon the flat stone.The Dragon Painter | Mary McNeil Fenollosa
He wudden't know whether I swept or dusted rightly, or whether I gave the place a lick and a promise.In the Onyx Lobby | Carolyn Wells
British Dictionary definitions for dust
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 ease: leaving 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
- dustless, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Other 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
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.