View synonyms for sift


[ sift ]

verb (used with object)

  1. to separate and retain the coarse parts of (flour, ashes, etc.) with a sieve.
  2. to scatter or sprinkle through or by means of a sieve:

    to sift sugar onto cake.

  3. to separate by or as if by a sieve.
  4. to examine closely:

    The detectives are still sifting the evidence.

    Synonyms: probe, search, inspect, scrutinize, sort

  5. to question closely.

verb (used without object)

  1. to sift something.
  2. to pass or fall through or as if through a sieve.


/ sɪft /


  1. tr to sieve (sand, flour, etc) in order to remove the coarser particles
  2. to scatter (something) over a surface through a sieve
  3. tr to separate with or as if with a sieve; distinguish between
  4. tr to examine minutely

    to sift evidence

  5. intr to move as if through a sieve

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Derived Forms

  • ˈsifter, noun

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Other Words From

  • outsift verb (used with object)
  • pre·sift verb (used with object)
  • re·sift verb (used with object)
  • un·sifted adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of sift1

before 900; Middle English siften, Old English siftan; cognate with Dutch, Middle Low German siften; akin to sieve

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Word History and Origins

Origin of sift1

Old English siftan; related to Middle Low German siften to sift, Dutch ziften; see sieve

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Example Sentences

Moreover, as agencies continue to invest in more data-generating tools, they are having to sift through more data than ever, and are struggling to keep up.

He takes core samples of that mud, dries it, sifts it and counts carbon atoms to determine how much the whole wetland sequesters.

The Nationals had to sift through whether that was related to his age or the pandemic-altered schedule.

There will be more scheduled games wiped out between now and March 14, and the selection committee’s task of sifting through and sizing up the accomplishments will be challenging.

I spent a lot of time sifting through the fury and fear online looking for some clue about what we’re supposed to do now.

From Time

Meanwhile, sift the flour, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.

But should you lack the energy to sift through the glut of options yourself, we can at least helpfully endorse this one.

But if you can sift through all of the legal posturing, a fairly accurate portrait of Sterling himself does begin to emerge.

Bernard: Film festivals sift out stuff that would never make the cut.

Sift the dry ingredients over a piece of parchment paper and then pour into a medium bowl.

He watched the Eye's slim white fingers reach down into the layer of diamonds, watched them sift the glittering gems.

It would be amusing to watch those flatfoots sitting around trying to sift a motive out of the thing.

Sift the whole through a fine cloth and add the yolks of a hundred poached eggs.

Drink, and go to sleep—sleep so sound that you waken only when Moukir and Nakir, the death angels, sift soul from body.

Who knows but some of her charms might miraculously sift in through a rent in my package and breathe a spell upon my words?





Sifrei Torahsifter