Origin of swidden

1951; special use of dial. (N England) swidden area of moor from which vegetation has been burned off, noun use of swidden, swithen to singe < Old Norse svithna to be singed, derivative of svītha to singe (compare dial. swithe, Middle English swithen)
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British Dictionary definitions for swidden


    1. an area of land where slash-and-burn techniques have been used to prepare it for cultivation
    2. (as modifier)small-scale swidden agriculture

Word Origin for swidden

C18: Northern English dialect variant of swithen to burn
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