Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of salt
Meaning of salt by Wiktionary Dictionary



    From Old English sealt, from Proto-Germanic *saltan ( cf. Dutch zout, German Salz, Swedish salt ), from Proto-Indo-European *seh₂l- ( cf. Welsh halen, Latin sal, Russian соль ( sol' ), Ancient Greek ἅλς ( háls ) ) .


    • ( UK ) IPA: /sɒlt/, X-SAMPA: /sQlt/
    • ( US ) IPA: /sɔlt/, /sɑlt/, X-SAMPA: /sOlt/, /sAlt
    • Rhymes: -ɒlt
    salt crystals


    salt ( plural: salts )

    1. A common substance, chemically consisting mainly of sodium chloride ( NaCl ), used extensively as a condiment and preservative .
    2. ( chemistry ) One of the compounds formed from the reaction of an acid with a base, where a positive ion replaces a hydrogen of the acid .
    3. A kind of marsh at the shore of a sea ( short for salt marsh, apparently not in a wide-spread use ) .
    4. ( slang ) A sailor ( also old salt ).
    5. ( cryptography ) Additional bytes inserted into a plaintext message before encryption, in order to increase randomness and render brute-force decryption more difficult .
    6. A person that engages in the political act of seeking employment at a company in order to help unionize it .

    Related terms


    salt ( comparative more salt, superlative most salt )

    1. Salty .
    2. Saline .


    Derived terms


Explanation of salt by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. preserve with salt

    2. people used to salt meats on ships
    3. add zest or liveliness to

    4. She salts her lectures with jokes
    5. sprinkle as if with salt

    6. the rebels had salted the fields with mines and traps
    7. add salt to

    1. ( of speech ) painful or bitter

    2. salt scorn- Shakespeare
      a salt apology
    1. the taste experience when common salt is taken into the mouth

    2. negotiations between the United States and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics opened in 1969 in Helsinki designed to limit both countries' stock of nuclear weapons

    3. white crystalline form of especially sodium chloride used to season and preserve food

    4. a compound formed by replacing hydrogen in an acid by a metal ( or a radical that acts like a metal )

    Definition of salt by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Salt n. [AS. sealt; akin to OS. & OFries. salt, D. zout, G. salz, Icel., Sw., & Dan. salt, L. sal, Gr. , Russ. sole, Ir. & Gael. salann, W. halen, of unknown origin. Cf. Sal, Salad, Salary, Saline, Sauce, Sausage.]
      1. The chloride of sodium, a substance used for seasoning food, for the preservation of meat, etc. It is found native in the earth, and is also produced, by evaporation and crystallization, from sea water and other water impregnated with saline particles.

      2. Hence, flavor; taste; savor; smack; seasoning.

      Though we are justices and doctors and churchmen . . . we have some salt of our youth in us. Shak.

      3. Hence, also, piquancy; wit; sense; as, “Attic salt”.

      4. A dish for salt at table; a saltcellar.

      I out and bought some things; among others, a dozen of silver salts. Pepys.

      5. A sailor; -- usually qualified by old. [Colloq.]

      Around the door are generally to be seen, laughing and gossiping, clusters of old salts. Hawthorne.

      6. ( Chem. ) The neutral compound formed by the union of an acid and a base; “salt sulphate of iron or green vitriol”.

      ☞ Except in case of ammonium salts, accurately speaking, it is the acid radical which unites with the base or basic radical, with the elimination of hydrogen, of water, or of analogous compounds as side products. In the case of diacid and triacid bases, and of dibasic and tribasic acids, the mutual neutralization may vary in degree, producing respectively basic, neutral, or acid salts. See Phrases below.

      7. Fig.: That which preserves from corruption or error; that which purifies; a corrective; an antiseptic; also, an allowance or deduction; as, “his statements must be taken with a grain of salt”.

      Ye are the salt of the earth. Matt. v. 13.

      8. pl. Any mineral salt used as an aperient or cathartic, especially Epsom salts, Rochelle salt, or Glauber's salt.

      9. pl. Marshes flooded by the tide. [Prov. Eng.]

      Above the salt, Below the salt, phrases which have survived the old custom, in the houses of people of rank, of placing a large saltcellar near the middle of a long table, the places above which were assigned to the guests of distinction, and those below to dependents, inferiors, and poor relations. See Saltfoot.

      His fashion is not to take knowledge of him that is beneath him in clothes. He never drinks below the salt. B. Jonson.

      -- Acid salt ( Chem. ) A salt derived from an acid which has several replaceable hydrogen atoms which are only partially exchanged for metallic atoms or basic radicals; as, “acid potassium sulphate is an acid salt”. A salt, whatever its constitution, which merely gives an acid reaction; “acid salt in this sense, though theoretically it is a neutral salt”. -- Alkaline salt ( Chem. ), a salt which gives an alkaline reaction, as sodium carbonate. -- Amphid salt ( Old Chem. ), a salt of the oxy type, formerly regarded as composed of two oxides, an acid and a basic oxide. [Obsolescent] -- Basic salt ( Chem. ) A salt which contains more of the basic constituent than is required to neutralize the acid. An alkaline salt. -- Binary salt ( Chem. ), a salt of the oxy type conveniently regarded as composed of two ingredients ( analogously to a haloid salt ), viz., a metal and an acid radical. -- Double salt ( Chem. ), a salt regarded as formed by the union of two distinct salts, as common alum, potassium aluminium
      sulphate. See under Double. -- Epsom salts. See in the Vocabulary. -- Essential salt ( Old Chem. ), a salt obtained by crystallizing plant juices. -- Ethereal salt. ( Chem. ) See under Ethereal. -- Glauber's salt or Glauber's salts. See in Vocabulary. -- Haloid salt ( Chem. ), a simple salt of a halogen acid, as sodium chloride. -- Microcosmic salt. ( Chem. ). See under Microcosmic. -- Neutral salt. ( Chem. ) A salt in which the acid and base ( in theory ) neutralize each other. A salt which gives a neutral reaction. -- Oxy salt ( Chem. ), a salt derived from an oxygen acid. -- Per salt ( Old Chem. ), a salt supposed to be derived from a peroxide base or analogous compound. [Obs.] -- Permanent salt, a salt which undergoes no change on exposure to the air. -- Proto salt ( Chem. ), a salt derived from a protoxide base or analogous compound. -- Rochelle salt. See under Rochelle. -- Salt of amber ( Old Chem. ), succinic acid. -- Salt of colcothar ( Old Chem. ), green vitriol, or sulphate of iron. -- Salt of hartshorn.
      ( Old Chem. ) Sal ammoniac, or ammonium chloride. Ammonium carbonate. Cf. Spirit of hartshorn, under Hartshorn. -- Salt of lemons. ( Chem. ) See Salt of sorrel, below. -- Salt of Saturn ( Old Chem. ), sugar of lead; lead acetate; -- the alchemical name of lead being Saturn. -- Salt of Seignette. Same as Rochelle salt. -- Salt of soda ( Old Chem. ), sodium carbonate. -- Salt of sorrel ( Old Chem. ), acid potassium oxalate, or potassium quadroxalate, used as a solvent for ink stains; -- so called because found in the sorrel, or Oxalis. Also sometimes inaccurately called salt of lemon. -- Salt of tartar ( Old Chem. ), potassium carbonate; -- so called because formerly made by heating cream of tartar, or potassium tartrate. [Obs.] -- Salt of Venus ( Old Chem. ), blue vitriol; copper sulphate; -- the alchemical name of copper being Venus.akin to OS. & OFries. salt, D. zout, G. salz, Icel., Sw., & Dan. salt, L. sal, Gr. , Russ. sole, Ir. & Gael. salann, W. halen, of unknown origin. Cf..
      Sal, Salad, Salary, Saline, Sauce, Sausage.]
      1. The chloride of sodium, a substance used for seasoning food, for the preservation of meat, etc. It is found native in the earth
    2. Salt a. [Compar. Salter ; superl. Saltest.] [AS. sealt, salt. See Salt, n.]
      1. Of or relating to salt; abounding in, or containing, salt; prepared or preserved with, or tasting of, salt; salted; as, “salt beef; salt water”. “Salt tears.” Chaucer.

      2. Overflowed with, or growing in, salt water; as, “a salt marsh; salt grass”.

      3. Fig.: Bitter; sharp; pungent.

      I have a salt and sorry rheum offends me. Shak.

      4. Fig.: Salacious; lecherous; lustful. Shak.

    3. Salt, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Salted; p. pr. & vb. n. Salting.]
      1. To sprinkle, impregnate, or season with salt; to preserve with salt or in brine; to supply with salt; as, “to salt fish, beef, or pork; to salt cattle”.

      2. To fill with salt between the timbers and planks, as a ship, for the preservation of the timber.

      To salt a mine, to artfully deposit minerals in a mine in order to deceive purchasers regarding its value. [Cant] -- To salt away, To salt down, to prepare with, or pack in, salt for preserving, as meat, eggs, etc.; hence, colloquially, to save, lay up, or invest sagely, as money.

    4. Salt v. i. To deposit salt as a saline solution; as, “the brine begins to salt”.

    5. Salt n. [L. saltus, fr. salire to leap.] The act of leaping or jumping; a leap. [Obs.] B. Jonson.