• synonyms


See more synonyms for welt on Thesaurus.com
  1. a ridge or wale on the surface of the body, as from a blow of a stick or whip.
  2. a blow producing such a ridge or wale.
  3. Shoemaking.
    1. a strip, as of leather, set in between the outsole of a shoe and the edges of its insole and upper, through which these parts are joined by stitching or stapling.
    2. a strip, usually of leather, that ornaments a shoe.
  4. a strengthening or ornamental finish along a seam, the edge of a garment, etc.
  5. a seam in which one edge is cut close to the stitching line and covered by the other edge, which is stitched over it.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to beat soundly, as with a stick or whip.
  2. to furnish or supply (a shoe or garment) with a welt or welts; sew a welt on to.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to be marked with or develop welts.
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Origin of welt

1375–1425; late Middle English welte, walt shoemaker's welt, Old English wælt (thigh) sinew
Related formsun·welt·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for welts

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Of course, every man-jack of us had lumps and welts and cuts, and there were some bones broken.

    Plain Mary Smith

    Henry Wallace Phillips

  • As they laid on quickly the welts and bloody stripes appeared.

  • Of our socks it could be said that the welts were good; the toes and heels had perished of overwork.

  • But the backs of his legs were so seamed with welts that he could not walk.

    Ted Strong in Montana

    Edward C. Taylor

  • It left Blue Blazes ridged with welts, trembling, fright sickened.

    Horses Nine

    Sewell Ford

British Dictionary definitions for welts


  1. a raised or strengthened seam or edge, sewn in or on a knitted garment
  2. another word for weal 1
  3. (in shoemaking) a strip of leather, etc, put in between the outer sole and the inner sole and upper
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verb (tr)
  1. to put a welt in (a garment, etc)
  2. to beat or flog soundly
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Word Origin

C15: origin unknown
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 welts



early 15c., a shoemaker's term, perhaps related to Middle English welten "to overturn, roll over" (c.1300), from Old Norse velta "to roll" (related to welter (v.)). Meaning "ridge on the skin from a wound" is first recorded 1800.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

welts in Medicine


  1. A ridge or bump on the skin caused by a lash or blow or sometimes by an allergic reaction.
  2. wheal
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.