- any unclean or soiling matter, as mud, dust, dung, trash, etc.; filth
- earth or garden soil
- anything common, filthy, or contemptible
- dirtiness, nastiness, corruption, etc.
- obscene writing, speech, etc.; pornography
- malicious talk or gossip
- Mining the gravel, soil, etc. from which gold is separated by washing or panning
Origin of dirtME, by metathesis from drit from Old Norse drita, excrement, akin to Old English dritan, to excrete from Indo-European base an unverified form dher- (see dark) from source Classical Latin forire, defecate
do someone dirt
hit the dirt
- Earth or soil.
- a. A filthy or soiling substance, such as mud or dust.b. Excrement.
- A squalid or filthy condition.
- One that is mean, contemptible, or vile.
- a. Obscene language or subject matter.b. Malicious or scandalous gossip.c. Information that embarrasses or accuses.
- Unethical behavior or practice; corruption.
- Material, such as gravel or slag, from which metal is extracted in mining.
Origin of dirtMiddle English variant of drit excrement, filth, mud from Old Norse
(usually uncountable, plural dirts)
(third-person singular simple present dirts, present participle dirting, simple past and past participle dirted)
From Middle English drit (“excrement”), probably from Old Norse drit (“exrement”), from Proto-Germanic *dritą, *dritō (“excrement”), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰreyd-, *treydʰ- (“to have diarrhea”). Cognate with Norwegian dritt (“excrement”), Icelandic drit (“bird exrement”), Dutch drijten (“to defecate”), drits (“dirt, mud, filth”) and dreet (“excrement”), regional German Driss (“shit”), Old English ġedrītan (“to defecate”), Albanian ndyrë (“dirty, filthy”).
- (Ireland) Deposit Interest Retention Tax