A young salmon when it first leaves fresh water and descends to the sea.
A young salmon when it becomes covered with silvery scales and first migrates from fresh water to the sea.
To become a smolt.
Origin of smolt
- Middle English from Medieval Latin smoltus probably of Old English origin
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English smolt, smylt, from Old English smolt, smeolt (“mild, peaceful, serene, still, gentle, clear, bright"), from Proto-Indo-European *smultaz, *smeltaz (“quiet, gentle"), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)meld- (“to beat, grind, crush, make weak"). Cognate with Scots smolt (“calm"), Old Saxon smultro (“quiet"), Middle Dutch smolt, smout (“weak, gentle, quiet"), Middle High German smolz (“dear, lovely, beautiful, sheen").
- Probably an alteration of smelt, due to smolt (“smooth"). See above.