(uncountable) Fine, dry particles of matter found in the air and covering the surface of objects, typically consisting of soil lifted up by the wind, pollen, hair, etc.
(countable) The act of cleaning by dusting.
* 2010 , Joan Busfield, Michael Paddon, Thinking About Children: Sociology and Fertility in Post-War England (page 150)
(obsolete) A single particle of earth or other material.
- once they start school, I mean you can do a room out one day, the next day it only needs a dust , doesn't it?
The earth, as the resting place of the dead.
* Bible, Job vii. 21
- to touch a dust of England's ground
The earthy remains of bodies once alive; the remains of the human body.
- I shall sleep in the dust .
(figurative) Something worthless.
- And you may carve a shrine about my dust .
(figurative) A low or mean condition.
* Bible, 1 Sam. ii. 8
- And by the merit of vile gold, dross, dust .
(slang, dated) cash; money (in reference to gold dust).
(mathematics) A totally disconnected set of points with a fractal structure.
- [God] raiseth up the poor out of the dust .
* angel dust
* bite the dust
* catch dust
* dust ball
* dustbin, dust bin
* dust devil
* dustbowl, dust bowl
* dust bunny
* dust filter
* dust mask
* dust trap
* fairy dust
* goofer dust
* pixie dust
* smart dust, smartdust
* turn to dust
To remove dust from.
* , chapter=12
The Mirror and the Lamp
, passage=There were many wooden chairs for the bulk of his visitors, and two wicker armchairs with red cloth cushions for superior people. From the packing-cases had emerged some Indian clubs, […], and all these articles […] made a scattered and untidy decoration that Mrs. Clough assiduously dusted
and greatly cherished.}}
To remove dust; to clean by removing dust.
Of a bird, to cover itself in sand or dry, dusty earth.
To spray or cover something with fine powder or liquid.
To leave; to rush off.
* 1939 , (Raymond Chandler), (The Big Sleep) , Penguin 2011, p. 75:
To reduce to a fine powder; to levigate.
- He added in a casual tone: ‘The girl can dust . I'd like to talk to you a little, soldier.’
* dust off
* vacuum cleaner
soil or earth
A stain or spot (on clothes etc); any foreign substance that worsens appearance
Previously unknown facts, or the invented "facts", about a person; gossip
- The reporter uncovered the dirt on the businessman by going undercover.
In placer mining, earth, gravel, etc., before washing.
- honours thrown away upon dirt and infamy
* dirt bike
* dirt nap
* do someone dirt
(rare) To make foul or filthy; soil; befoul; dirty