AskDefine | Define welter

The Collaborative Dictionary

Welter \Wel"ter\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Weltered; p. pr. & vb. n. Weltering.] [Freq. of OE. walten to roll over, AS. wealtan; akin to LG. weltern, G. walzen to roll, to waltz, sich w[aum]lzen to welter, OHG. walzan to roll, Icel. velta, Dan. v[ae]lte, Sw. v[aum]ltra, v[aum]lta; cf. Goth. waltjan; probably akin to E. wallow, well, v. i. [root]146. See Well, v. i., and cf. Waltz.] [1913 Webster]
To roll, as the body of an animal; to tumble about, especially in anything foul or defiling; to wallow. [1913 Webster] When we welter in pleasures and idleness, then we eat and drink with drunkards. --Latimer. [1913 Webster] These wizards welter in wealth's waves. --Spenser. [1913 Webster] He must not float upon his watery bier Unwept, and welter to the parching wind, Without the meed of some melodious tear. --Milton. [1913 Webster] The priests at the altar . . . weltering in their blood. --Landor. [1913 Webster]
To rise and fall, as waves; to tumble over, as billows. "The weltering waves." --Milton. [1913 Webster] Waves that, hardly weltering, die away. --Wordsworth. [1913 Webster] Through this blindly weltering sea. --Trench. [1913 Webster]
Welter \Wel"ter\, v. t. [Cf. Wilt, v. i.] To wither; to wilt. [R.] [1913 Webster] Weltered hearts and blighted . . . memories. --I. Taylor. [1913 Webster]
Welter \Wel"ter\, a. (Horse Racing) Of, pertaining to, or designating, the most heavily weighted race in a meeting; as, a welter race; the welter stakes. [1913 Webster]
Welter \Wel"ter\, n. [1913 Webster]
That in which any person or thing welters, or wallows; filth; mire; slough. [1913 Webster] The foul welter of our so-called religious or other controversies. --Carlyle. [1913 Webster]
A rising or falling, as of waves; as, the welter of the billows; the welter of a tempest. [1913 Webster]

Word Net

welter n : a confused multitude of things [syn: clutter, jumble, muddle, mare's nest, smother]


1 toss, roll, or rise and fall in an uncontrolled way; "The shipwrecked survivors weltered in the sea for hours"
2 roll around, "pigs were wallowing in the mud" [syn: wallow]
3 be immersed in; "welter in work"

Moby Thesaurus

arsy-varsiness, bask, bend, blunder, careen, career, clutter, cower, cringe, crouch, falter, farrago, flounce, flounder, get down, grovel, hash, heave, helter-skelter, higgledy-piggledy, hobbyhorse, hodgepodge, hunch, hunch down, hysteron proteron, indulge, jumble, labor, litter, lurch, luxuriate, make heavy weather, mess, mishmash, mummify, mummy, pitch, pitch and plunge, pitch and toss, plunge, pound, rear, reel, revel, rock, roll, rollick, scend, scramble, scrouch down, seethe, shrivel, squat, stagger, stoop, strive, struggle, stumble, sway, swing, thrash about, topsy-turviness, topsy-turvydom, toss, toss and tumble, toss and turn, totter, tumble, turmoil, unholy mess, volutation, wallop, wallow, wilt, wizen, writhe, yaw


Etymology 1



  1. general confusion; disorderly mixture; aimless effort; as, a welter of papers and magazines


  1. to roll; to wallow
  2. to be soaked or steeped in; as, to welter in one’s own blood

Etymology 2


  1. Of horsemen, heavyweight; as, a welter race


Derived terms

Welter may refer to welterweight, a weight class division in combat sports, especially boxing.
Welter as a surname may refer to:
Welter may also refer to:
Privacy Policy, About Us, Terms and Conditions, Contact Us
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
Material from Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dict
Valid HTML 4.01 Strict, Valid CSS Level 2.1