A Word A Day : Wilt

Wednesday, 17th October 2007 : Today's Word is ...


( Verb & Noun )

Pronunciation : wi-lt

1. To droop or shrivel through lack of water, too much heat, or disease, or make a plant droop or shrivel

2. To become weak and tired, e.g. because of heat

3. To lose confidence, composure, or enthusiasm, or make somebody do this

4. The drooping of plants or shriveling of leaves because of a lack of water, too much heat, or disease

5. A plant disease caused by fungi, bacteria, or viruses that make plants droop and leaves shrivel

6. An instance of wilting or the condition of having wilted


Possibly alteration of dialectal welk, from Middle English welken


Droop, Weaken, Wither, Shrivel, Fade, Wane, Sag


Strengthen, Enliven, Flourish

Contextual Examples:

• His brain wilted from hitherto unprecedented weariness.

• The landladies, without exception, had wilted beneath that gaze.

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