• WordNet 3.6
    • v dust remove the dust from "dust the cabinets"
    • v dust rub the dust over a surface so as to blur the outlines of a shape "The artist dusted the charcoal drawing down to a faint image"
    • v dust distribute loosely "He scattered gun powder under the wagon"
    • v dust cover with a light dusting of a substance "dust the bread with flour"
    • n dust fine powdery material such as dry earth or pollen that can be blown about in the air "the furniture was covered with dust"
    • n dust free microscopic particles of solid material "astronomers say that the empty space between planets actually contains measurable amounts of dust"
    • n dust the remains of something that has been destroyed or broken up
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Dust Jacket Front Dust Jacket Front

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: An acre of trees can remove about 13 tons of dust and gases every year from the surrounding environment
    • Dust A single particle of earth or other matter. "To touch a dust of England's ground."
    • Dust Figuratively, a low or mean condition. "God] raiseth up the poor out of the dust ."
    • Dust Figuratively, a worthless thing. "And by the merit of vile gold, dross, dust ."
    • Dust Fine, dry particles of earth or other matter, so comminuted that they may be raised and wafted by the wind; that which is crumbled to minute portions; fine powder; as, clouds of dust; bone dust. "Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.""Stop! -- for thy tread is on an empire's dust ."
    • Dust Gold dust
    • Dust The earth, as the resting place of the dead. "For now shall sleep in the dust ."
    • Dust The earthy remains of bodies once alive; the remains of the human body. "And you may carve a shrine about my dust ."
    • Dust To free from dust; to brush, wipe, or sweep away dust from; as, to dust a table or a floor.
    • Dust To reduce to a fine powder; to levigate.
    • Dust To sprinkle with dust.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Approximately 40,000 tons of meteoric dust hits the Earth each year.
    • n dust Earth or other matter in fine dry particles, so attenuated that they can be raised and carried by the wind; finely comminuted or powdered matter: as, clouds of dust obscure the sky.
    • n dust A collection or cloud of powdered matter in the air; an assemblage or mass of fine particles carried by the wind: as, the trampling of the animals raised a great dust; to take the dust of a carriage going in advance.
    • n dust Hence Confusion, obscurity, or entanglement of contrary opinions or desires; embroilment; discord: as, to raise a dust about an affront; to kick up a dust. See phrases below.
    • n dust A small quantity of any powdered substance sprinkled over something: used chiefly in cookery: as, give it a dust of ground spice.
    • n dust Crude matter regarded as consisting of separate particles; elementary substance.
    • n dust Hence A dead body, or one of the atoms that compose it; remains.
    • n dust A low condition, as if prone on the ground.
    • n dust Rubbish; ashes and other refuse.
    • n dust Gold-dust; hence, money; cash. See phrases below.
    • n dust Same as dust-brand.
    • n dust To make confusion or disturbance; get up a dispute; create discord or angry discussion.
    • dust To free from dust; brush, wipe, or sweep away dust from: as, to dust a table, floor, or room.
    • dust To sprinkle with dust, or with something in the form of dust: as, to dust a cake with fine sugar; to dust a surface with white or yellow.
    • dust To throw; hurl.
    • dust To strike; beat.
    • dust To run; leave hastily; scuttle; get out: as, to get up and dust; come, dust out of here.
    • n dust In botany, pollen.
    • n dust Flour.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Most household dust is made of dead skin cells.
    • n Dust dust fine particles of matter: a cloud of powdery matter present in the atmosphere: powder: earth: the grave, where the body becomes dust: a mean condition: gold-dust—hence money
    • v.t Dust to free from dust: to sprinkle with dust
    • ***


  • Babe Ruth
    Babe Ruth
    “Watch my dust.”
  • T. S. Eliot
    “I will show you fear in a handful of dust.”
  • Rabindranath Tagore
    “Your idol is shattered in the dust to prove that God's dust is greater than your idol.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “Spare minutes are the Gold-dust of time; the portions of life most fruitful in good and evil; the gaps through which temptations enter.”
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
    “Life is real! Life is earnest! And death is not its goal. Dust thou art, to dust returneth, was not spoken of the soul.”
  • Persian Proverb
    Persian Proverb
    “The best memory is that which forgets nothing, but injuries. Write kindness in marble and write injuries in the dust.”


Bite the dust - This is a way of saying that somebody has died, especially if they are killed violently like a soldier in battle.
Collect dust - If something is collecting dust, it isn't being used any more.
Dry as dust - Very dry. Often used metaphorically: a boring, literal person or an unexciting speech. "She knows her stuff but she's dry as dust."
When the dust clears - "When the dust clears" is a way to say when everything's finished and the results are seen. ("When the dust settles" is also used)


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
AS. dust,; cf. LG. dust, D. duist, meal dust, OD. doest, donst, and G. dunst, vapor, OHG. tunist, dunist, a blowing, wind, Icel. dust, dust, Dan. dyst, mill dust; perh. akin to L. fumus, smoke, E. fume,. √71


In literature:

What would you take to remove the dust from the window-sill?
"Ontario Teachers' Manuals: Household Management" by Ministry of Education
For, despite the enshrouding dust, they have no difficulty in identifying the individuals before them.
"The Flag of Distress" by Mayne Reid
Picking himself up and dusting the sand from his clothes he thought he saw a white gleam over against the wall.
"Hunters Out of Space" by Joseph Everidge Kelleam
The dust has also been worse than usual and everything in my tent is grey.
"The Incomparable 29th and the "River Clyde"" by George Davidson
As he spoke he drew from his pocket a good-sized bag which appeared to be nearly full of dust.
"Ben's Nugget" by Horatio, Jr. Alger
The troops found that straw huts or tukals afforded far better protection than the tents from the sun and from dust-storms.
"Khartoum Campaign, 1898" by Bennet Burleigh
Your father followed me into the bedroom, and your mother was there already dusting the big shells on the mantelpiece.
"The Manxman A Novel - 1895" by Hall Caine
After supper the boys had gone to the pond under the willows in the big cattle corral, to get rid of the dust of plowing.
"A Collection of Stories, Reviews and Essays" by Willa Cather
Although it was only spring, the road which wound from nowhere between the unsightly shacks was ankle deep in dust.
"Desert Conquest" by A. M. Chisholm
If I don't make him bite the dust!
"The Search" by Grace Livingston Hill

In poetry:

The hurrying dust
Has never a face,
No longer human
In man or woman.
"The End of Love" by Kathleen Raine
"If I sit in the dust
For lauding good wine,
Ha, ha! it is just:
So sits the vine!"
"Abu Midjan" by George MacDonald
And from that scattered dust,
Around us and abroad,
Shall spring a plenteous seed,
Of witnesses for God.
"Flung to the Heedless Winds" by Martin Luther
O wondrous mystery, unread
By tongue of sage or pen,
The happy sunshine overhead,
Beneath the dust of men!
"In Kirkconnel Old Churchyard" by Alexander Anderson
Therefore in hope and love I wait
The hour, the end, when I
From out the dust will rise in state
To immortality.
"The Last Sweet Walk" by Alexander Anderson
"Because I asked the Spirit,
If God is good and just,
How it happened that the masters
Did grind us to the dust.
"The Deliverance" by Frances Ellen Watkins

In news:

A Canadian truck driver in town visiting relatives was shot and killed during an apparent robbery attempt in the Englewood neighborhood CPD were at the scene today dusting for fingerprints.
Fill these unexpected containers (that won't become dust collectors after Christmas) with something special.
Well, it's time to dust off that old 10-speed and throw on your peddlin' shoes — the Madeira Centennial Criterium Bike Race is upon us.
Antonio Cromartie, dusting off a page from Rex Ryan's old book on bravado, predicted Thursday the slumping Jets will turn around their season and reach the postseason.
M arcel Duchamp's The Large Glass, with its arrangement of oil, varnish, foil, wire and dust on two glass panels, has long been renowned as a masterwork that demands to be looked through as well as looked at.
Animal agriculture is not being left in the dust.
It throws up plumes of dust as the occupants scan the horizon.
Lest you forget, US Sen Hillary Clinton, D-NY, who's locked in a bit of a dust-up with her potential 2008 presidential rival, US Sen John McCain, R-Az.
After years of neglect, the Ohio State bird depository gets a dusting off.
Dust storms affect 400 million people in China each year.
Ill winds die down on "The Dust Bowl".
The huge Black Sunday storm - the worst storm of the decade-long Dust Bowl in the southern Plains - as it approaches Ulysses, Kansas, April 14, 1935.
Gusts and dust diminished and airport operations returned to normal in chilly Las Vegas, a day after a dry cold front swept through southern Nevada with winds clocked as high as 85 mph in rural Nye County and 63 mph near the Las Vegas Strip.
COLUMBIA — Clouds of dust and exhaust obscure the track, but even without the debris, it's hard to tell what's happening.
ALBANY — Aqueduct may leave the dirt in the dust.

In science:

However having a realistic dust model, van de Hulst developed the scattering tools to provide a good idea of dust properties.
Cosmic Dust in the 21st Century
It is well recognized that the total IR flux from the homogeneously mixed stars and dust is expected to be greater than that in which the extinction is less (see Calzetti 1999a,b and references therein). A ma jor effect introduced by the dust model considered here is in the extinction curve.
Cosmic Dust in the 21st Century
Two other heating mechanisms for dust grains can operate (Xu 1997). (a) Collisional heating for dust mixed with thermal gases.
High-Redshift Galaxies: The Far-Infrared and Sub-Millimeter View
The general aims of the survey are to provide the statistical measurements (the submillimetre luminosity and dust-mass functions) necessary for interpreting observations of the highredshift universe and to determine the submm properties of dust in the local universe.
The SCUBA Local Universe Galaxy Survey II. 450 micron data - evidence for cold dust in bright IRAS Galaxies
This would have an effect on the original dust masses we derived under the assumption of a single temperature, as at 850µm dust mass is roughly inversely proportional to the assumed mean dust temperature.
The SCUBA Local Universe Galaxy Survey II. 450 micron data - evidence for cold dust in bright IRAS Galaxies