the portion of the earth's surface consisting of disintegrated rock and humus.
a particular kind of earth: sandy soil.
the ground as producing vegetation or as cultivated for its crops: fertile soil.
a country, land, or region: an act committed on American soil.
the ground or earth: tilling the soil.
any place or condition providing the opportunity for growth or development: Some believe that poverty provides the soil for crime.
- soilless, adjective
Other definitions for soil (2 of 3)
to make unclean, dirty, or filthy, especially on the surface: to soil one's clothes.
to smirch, smudge, or stain: The ink soiled his hands.
to sully or tarnish, as with disgrace; defile morally: to soil one's good name.
to become soiled: White soils easily.
Other definitions for soil (3 of 3)
to feed (confined cattle, horses, etc.) freshly cut green fodder for roughage.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use soil in a sentence
In all, soil erosion will cause at least eight islands, seven of them in India, to simply vanish, displacing tens of thousands of people.
Another obstacle is the fact that much of the land on his books isn’t ready for planting yet and that soil preparation machinery is expensive and difficult to come by in Ghana.
The new result “tells you that if you want to grow plants on Mars using soil, you’re going to have to put in a lot of work to transform that material into something that plants can grow in,” Cannon says.Farming on Mars will be a lot harder than ‘The Martian’ made it seem | Maria Temming | November 18, 2020 | Science News
This same ability also makes mushrooms exceptional environmental remediators, ingesting the toxins and heavy metals that various industrial practices have leached into the soil.These Photos Remind Us Why Conservation Matters - Issue 92: Frontiers | Kevin Berger | November 11, 2020 | Nautilus
Researchers hope bacteria may perhaps one day help us break down a patch lunar regolith into soil to grow space veggies or extract minerals used in life support systems that produce air and water.These rock-eating microbes could help us settle the Moon and Mars | Paola Rosa-Aquino | November 11, 2020 | Popular-Science
He described the pollution like as a “heavy, soiled blanket that smothers us each night.”Italy’s Triangle Of Death: Naples Residents Blame Child Cancer Rates On Mob Disposal Of Toxic Chemicals | Barbie Latza Nadeau | November 21, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
Feeling soiled by the news of Arnold Schwarzenegger's secret child?Arnold's Divorce Scandal: 7 Basic Tips for Horny Politicians | Michelle Cottle | May 18, 2011 | THE DAILY BEAST
His demeanor won him the nickname “ogre of Avetrana” because of his dirty fingernails and soiled clothing.
Well John, you just soiled the sanctity of your own institution so what does that say about your deeply held convictions?
Let the thought of self pass in, and the beauty of great action is gone, like the bloom from a soiled flower.Pearls of Thought | Maturin M. Ballou
She was in a soiled dressing gown of purple flannel, with several of the buttons off.Rosemary in Search of a Father | C. N. Williamson
She wore soiled Burberry, high-legged tan boots, and a peaked cap of distinctly military appearance.Dope | Sax Rohmer
It was a history of the lives and trials of great criminals, and the pages were soiled and thumbed with use.Oliver Twist, Vol. II (of 3) | Charles Dickens
A soiled bonnet cap, untidy strings, or torn gloves and collar will utterly spoil the prettiest costume.The Ladies' Book of Etiquette, and Manual of Politeness | Florence Hartley
British Dictionary definitions for soil (1 of 3)
a type of this material having specific characteristics: loamy soil
land, country, or region: one's native soil
the soil life and work on a farm; land: he belonged to the soil, as his forefathers had
any place or thing encouraging growth or development
British Dictionary definitions for soil (2 of 3)
to make or become dirty or stained
(tr) to pollute with sin or disgrace; sully; defile: he soiled the family honour by his cowardice
the state or result of soiling
refuse, manure, or excrement
British Dictionary definitions for soil (3 of 3)
(tr) to feed (livestock) freshly cut green fodder either to fatten or purge them
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 soil
The loose top layer of the Earth's surface, consisting of rock and mineral particles mixed with decayed organic matter (humus), and capable of retaining water, providing nutrients for plants, and supporting a wide range of biotic communities. Soil is formed by a combination of depositional, chemical, and biological processes and plays an important role in the carbon, nitrogen, and hydrologic cycles. Soil types vary widely from one region to another, depending on the type of bedrock they overlie and the climate in which they form. In wet and humid regions, for example, soils tend to be thicker than they do in dry regions. See more at A horizon B horizon C horizon. See illustration at ABC soil.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Cultural definitions for soil
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.