View synonyms for salty


[ sawl-tee ]


, salt·i·er, salt·i·est.
  1. tasting of or containing salt; saline.
  2. racy or coarse:

    salty humor.

  3. of the sea, sailing, or life at sea:

    salty tales of adventure on the high seas.

  4. Slang. (especially of a sailor) toughened by experience:

    proud and salty Marines.

  5. Slang. angry, upset, or hostile, especially due to embarrassment or failure:

    He gets all salty whenever he loses.


/ ˈsɔːltɪ /


  1. of, tasting of, or containing salt
  2. (esp of humour) sharp; piquant
  3. relating to life at sea

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Derived Forms

  • ˈsaltily, adverb
  • ˈsaltiness, noun
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Other Words From

  • salti·ly adverb
  • salti·ness noun
  • over·salty adjective
  • un·salty adjective
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Word History and Origins

Origin of salty1

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English; salt 1, -y 1
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Example Sentences

The water molecules would be too few and far between for astronauts to use, and the extremely salty soil would poison life as we know it.

The result was at once sweet, spicy, crunchy and salty, and felt more like a main dish than a side.

After a couple of weeks without any added salt, you will notice how salty your food has been.

Their radicalization was right before our eyes, on social media and television, on bar stools and at our Thanksgiving tables, masquerading as politics and salty humor in memes, stickers and T-shirts.

Even though there was a ban on liquor, hundreds of taverns across the city covertly distributed alcohol and served free square, thin, salty bite-size slices of pizza to keep the guests drinking.

From Ozy

But what about the screams, the salty puddles, and big empty packages of frozen fish lying on the ground outside the fence?

The wind blew dry, salty air from the former seabed far to the south and east.

By the late 1990s the sea level dropped by 16 meters, leaving fishing boats and ships resting on the sandy and salty bottom.

The buttery, nutty, and sweet and salty all work together to form a balance of flavors.

The chicken, fried in impeccably fresh peanut oil, is enveloped in a salty skin that peels away in bacon-rich strips.

We cross over the bridges that span salty channels, oozy and redolent of ocean and sea-weed during the hours of ebb.

In mine and field and factory they had tasted the salty flavor of real things, and they built a school that has this flavor.

And how indispensable are the clear mountain streams to the sea, in pouring fresh water into its salty heart.

All these animals came to it in great numbers, and drank the waters, and ate great wads of the salty mud.

Very salty meats, or those much dried in smoking should be soaked overnight in cold water before boiling.


Related Words

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About This Word

What else does salty mean?

Salty is a slang term for irritated, angry, or resentful, especially as a result of losing or being slighted. This sense of salty originates in and was popularized by Black English.

Where does salty come from?

The term salty has a long history of slang meanings, probably because of its association with sailors. In the 1860s, salty was a synonym for “racy” or “vulgar,” also a likely connection to (the popular reputation of) sailors.

By the 1920s–30s, salty is recorded in Black English as jump salty, meaning to become suddenly angry. The phrase jump salty stuck around well into the 1960s.

Owing in part to the influence of Black English on popular culture, salty has spread in the mainstream vernacular as a slang term for “bitter” and “upset,” e.g., He was salty I didn’t invite him to the party.

How is salty used in real life?

People who use the slang version of salty often use it to describe someone who is bitter or reacting sourly (emotions love taste metaphors) to something that made them upset—say, losing in a video game. And speaking of losing, slang terms or expressions that have a similar sense to salty include sore loser and butthurt.


This content is not meant to be a formal definition of this term. Rather, it is an informal summary that seeks to provide supplemental information and context important to know or keep in mind about the term’s history, meaning, and usage.




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