Nearby words

  1. sware,
  2. swarf,
  3. swarm,
  4. swarm cell,
  5. swarm intelligence,
  6. swarth,
  7. swarthout,
  8. swarthy,
  9. swartkrans ape-man,
  10. swartzite

Origin of swart

before 900; Middle English; Old English sweart black, dark; cognate with German schwarz, Old Norse svartr, Gothic swarts; akin to Latin sordēs filth

Related formsswart·ness, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for swarter


swarth (swɔːθ)


archaic, or dialect swarthy
Derived Formsswartness or swarthness, noun

Word Origin for swart

Old English sweart; related to Old Frisian swart, Old Norse svartr, Old High German swarz black, Latin sordēs dirt; see sordid

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

Word Origin and History for swarter



Old English sweart "black," from Proto-Germanic *swartaz (cf. Old Frisian and Middle Dutch swart, Old Norse svartr, German schwarz, Gothic swarts "dark-colored, black"), from PIE root *swordo- "dirty, dark, black" (source of sordid). The true Germanic word for "black," surviving in the Continental languages.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper