Definition of sediment in English:



  • 1[mass noun] Matter that settles to the bottom of a liquid; dregs.

    ‘the ice freezes the wine and sediment at the base of the cork’
    • ‘I had no choice but to wait for the sediment to settle.’
    • ‘Fill a jug and leave it to stand until the sediment has settled, then use the clear water at the top.’
    • ‘Serious restaurants will use crystal stemware of sufficient size to allow swirling and sniffing, and decanters should also be available for young wines in need of oxidation or old wines with sediment.’
    • ‘The sediment will settle in a thick layer at the bottom.’
    • ‘There was a lot of sediment at the bottom of the glass, but the wine waiter told us this was a sign of a good wine.’
    • ‘Look for a British beer with visible yeast sediment in the bottom of the bottle.’
    • ‘My wife claims that disturbed sediment in wines affects taste as well as appearance.’
    • ‘Ideally, red and fortified wines should stand upright for about a week before the event to adjust slowly to the increased temperature and to enable any sediment to settle at the bottom of the bottle.’
    • ‘The result is a clear, gluggable, star-bright jug of wine - and the contents of the glass can be swigged too, once the sediment has settled.’
    • ‘Pour into eight clean plastic soft drink bottles, stirring the mix often as the sediment settles quickly.’
    • ‘Just be sure to strain it first through a coffee filter to remove any remaining dirt or sediment.’
    • ‘First stand the wine upright for a day or two, so all the sediment sinks to the bottom of the bottle.’
    • ‘The wine is cleared of sediment and bottled under pressure, directly from the tank.’
    • ‘Discard the sediment at the bottom of the drained container.’
    • ‘It contains no spices and leaves a little sediment in the bottom of the cup.’
    • ‘Fry these until just colouring and loosening the sediment from the bottom of the pan.’
    dregs, lees, deposit, grounds, settlings, residue, remains, accumulation, silt, sludge, alluvium
    precipitate, sublimate, residuum
    draff, grouts
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Geology Particulate matter that is carried by water or wind and deposited on the surface of the land or the seabed, and may in time become consolidated into rock.
      ‘there is a huge concentration of sediment in deltas’
      [count noun] ‘it takes hundreds of thousands of years to turn the sediments into carbonate rock’
      • ‘The proportion of coarse sediment deposited in the plot drains increased with larger storms.’
      • ‘Most coarse-grained clastic sediment that is deposited in turbidite basins is either derived from alluvial basins or shallow marine shelves.’
      • ‘The generally immature nature of the palaeosols indicates that most vegetation colonized newly deposited fluvial sediments.’
      • ‘Areas of overlying sandy sediments were removed to expose the fossiliferous clay.’
      • ‘Siliciclastic sediment is supplemented by skeletal debris of biological origin or by biochemically extracted calcium carbonate.’


  • 1 Settle as sediment.

    ‘the erythrocytes were allowed to sediment within the syringe’
    • ‘Another method was to allow the powder to sediment out of a viscous solution of gum arabic, leaving only the very finest particles in suspension.’
    • ‘Throughout the two protocols described below, cells were allowed to sediment between each step.’
    • ‘The solution was allowed to sediment for 24 h and the particles left in suspension were drawn off with a syringe and used for perfusions.’
    • ‘Proteins will sediment through a solution in a centrifugal field dependent upon their mass.’
    1. 1.1(of a liquid) deposit a sediment.
      ‘heparinated blood was allowed to sediment at room temperature’
    2. 1.2[with object]Deposit (something) as a sediment.
      ‘the DNA was sedimented by centrifugation’
      ‘sedimented waste’
      • ‘This complex was sedimented by centrifugation at 10 000 g for 2 min.’
      • ‘Such nuclear suspension was sedimented by gentle centrifugation, the enzyme solution was decanted, and the nuclear pellet was resuspended in 1 x PBS buffer.’
      • ‘Cellular components were sedimented by centrifugation at 4 [degrees] C, 500 xg for 10 min.’
      • ‘For the routine measurements of Chl concentration, the cells were sedimented by centrifugation and extracted with 100% methanol.’
      • ‘The membranes were sedimented at 24,000 g for 20 min.’
      • ‘After 1 min of extraction, cells were sedimented and the supernatant was decanted.’
      • ‘Sputum cells were sedimented by centrifugation at 400 × g for 10 minutes.’
      • ‘Pollen was sedimented by centrifugation at 100 g for 2 min and the excess sucrose drawn off by pipette.’
      • ‘The homogenized muscle was sedimented at 5000 g for 5 min.’
      • ‘The cell suspension was collected in an Eppendorf tube and sedimented by gentle centrifugation.’
      • ‘After the respective diffusion time, sporopollenin capsules were sedimented by centrifugation.’


Mid 16th century: from French sédiment or Latin sedimentum settling, from sedere sit.