a crystalline compound, sodium chloride, NaCl, occurring as a mineral, a constituent of seawater, etc., and used for seasoning food, as a preservative, etc.
table salt mixed with a particular herb or seasoning for which it is named: garlic salt;celery salt.
Chemistry. any of a class of compounds formed by the replacement of one or more hydrogen atoms of an acid with elements or groups, which are composed of anions and cations, and which usually ionize in solution; a product formed by the neutralization of an acid by a base.
salts, any of various salts used as purgatives, as Epsom salts.
an element that gives liveliness, piquancy, or pungency: Anecdotes are the salt of his narrative.
a small, usually open dish, as of silver or glass, used on the table for holding salt.
Informal. a sailor, especially an old or experienced one: He's an old salt who'll be happy to tell you about his years at sea.
to season with salt.
to cure, preserve, or treat with salt.
to furnish with salt: to salt cattle.
to treat with common salt or with any chemical salt.
to spread salt, especially rock salt, on so as to melt snow or ice: The highway department salted the roads after the storm.
to introduce rich ore or other valuable matter fraudulently into (a mine, the ground, a mineral sample, etc.) to create a false impression of value.
to add interest or excitement to: a novel salted with witty dialogue.
containing salt; having the taste of salt: salt water.
cured or preserved with salt: salt cod.
inundated by or growing in salt water: salt marsh.
producing the one of the four basic taste sensations that is not sweet, sour, or bitter.
pungent or sharp: salt speech.
Also salt down . to preserve by adding quantities of salt to, as meat.
Informal. to keep in reserve; store away; save: to salt away most of one's earnings.
salt out, to separate (a dissolved substance) from a solution by the addition of a salt, especially common salt.
Idioms about salt
rub salt in / into someone's wounds, to make someone's bad situation even worse.
with a grain / pinch of salt, with reserve or allowance; with an attitude of skepticism: Diplomats took the reports of an impending crisis with a grain of salt.
worth one's salt, deserving of one's wages or salary: We couldn't find an assistant worth her salt.
- saltlike, adjective
Other definitions for salt (2 of 3)
Other definitions for SALT (3 of 3)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use salt in a sentence
Along with the expected water and salts, the geysers contain organic compounds.These Images Expose the Dark Side of the Solar System - Issue 89: The Dark Side | Corey S. Powell | August 26, 2020 | Nautilus
The salts found on the surface are important in helping to maintain liquid water within an environment like Ceres.The dwarf planet Ceres might be home to an underground ocean of water | Neel Patel | August 11, 2020 | MIT Technology Review
He also learned how salt marshes can protect inland communities by buffering those waves.For teens, big problems may lead to meaningful research | Carolyn Wilke | July 28, 2020 | Science News For Students
For some tastes, such as salt, scientists can isolate the taste alone, dropping salty water right into the mouth.
The team also tested the device with artificial sweat that included water and salts.
Place the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt on parchment or wax paper.Make ‘The Chew’s’ Carla Hall’s Sticky Toffee Pudding | Carla Hall | December 28, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Whisk in the half and half and season to taste with salt and pepper.Make Carla Hall’s Crispy Shallot Green Bean Casserole | Carla Hall | December 27, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and season liberally with salt.Make Carla Hall’s Crispy Shallot Green Bean Casserole | Carla Hall | December 27, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Remove from heat and stir in the walnuts, rum, powdered sugar, and salt until fully incorporated.
Rub the loin with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.Make Carla Hall’s Roasted Pork Loin With Cranberries | Carla Hall | December 24, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
The Afghan was true to his salt, and their own retainers, who had come with them from Lucknow, remained steadfast at this crisis.The Red Year | Louis Tracy
Robert Fitzgerald received a patent in England for making salt water fresh.The Every Day Book of History and Chronology | Joel Munsell
The men arrived in very bad condition, and many of them blinded with the salt water which had dashed into their eyes.
He shall pour frost as salt upon the earth: and when it freezeth, it shall become like the tops of thistles.The Bible, Douay-Rheims Version | Various
How still it was, with only the voice of the sea whispering through the reeds that grew in the salt-water pools!The Awakening and Selected Short Stories | Kate Chopin
British Dictionary definitions for salt (1 of 2)
a white powder or colourless crystalline solid, consisting mainly of sodium chloride and used for seasoning and preserving food
(modifier) preserved in, flooded with, containing, or growing in salt or salty water: salt pork; salt marshes
chem any of a class of usually crystalline solid compounds that are formed from, or can be regarded as formed from, an acid and a base by replacement of one or more hydrogen atoms in the acid molecules by positive ions from the base
liveliness or pungency: his wit added salt to the discussion
dry or laconic wit
a sailor, esp one who is old and experienced
short for saltcellar
rub salt into someone's wounds to make someone's pain, shame, etc, even worse
salt of the earth a person or group of people regarded as the finest of their kind
with a grain of salt or with a pinch of salt with reservations; sceptically
worth one's salt efficient; worthy of one's pay
to season or preserve with salt
to scatter salt over (an icy road, path, etc) to melt the ice
to add zest to
(often foll by down or away) to preserve or cure with salt or saline solution
chem to treat with common salt or other chemical salt
to provide (cattle, etc) with salt
to give a false appearance of value to, esp to introduce valuable ore fraudulently into (a mine, sample, etc)
not sour, sweet, or bitter; salty
obsolete rank or lascivious (esp in the phrase a salt wit)
- saltish, adjective
- saltless, adjective
- saltlike, adjective
- saltness, noun
British Dictionary definitions for SALT (2 of 2)
Strategic Arms Limitation Talks or Treaty
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
Scientific definitions for salt
Any of a large class of chemical compounds formed when a positively charged ion (a cation) bonds with a negatively charged ion (an anion), as when a halogen bonds with a metal. Salts are water soluble; when dissolved, the ions are freed from each other, and the electrical conductivity of the water is increased. See more at complex salt double salt simple salt.
A colorless or white crystalline salt in which a sodium atom (the cation) is bonded to a chlorine atom (the anion). This salt is found naturally in all animal fluids, in seawater, and in underground deposits (when it is often called halite). It is used widely as a food seasoning and preservative. Also called common salt, sodium chloride, table salt. Chemical formula: NaCl.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Cultural definitions for salt
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Other Idioms and Phrases with salt
In addition to the idioms beginning with salt
- salt away
- salt of the earth, the
- back to the salt mines
- with a grain of salt
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.