Main definitions of slough in English

: slough1slough2

slough1

noun

  • 1A swamp.

    • ‘This expansive ‘river’ covered almost 11,000 square miles, creating a mosaic of ponds, sloughs, sawgrass, marshes, hardwood hammocks, and forested uplands.’
    • ‘Throughout these valleys Red-necked Grebes are found on sloughs, ponds, lakes, and reservoirs, not on moving water.’
    • ‘The main landscape feature is endless peat bog, surrounded by marsh, leading into morasses, sloughs and quagmires.’
    • ‘Yesterday at low tide, silt shut the slough like trap, mud stranded boats on docks perched high above water.’
    • ‘The turtle waddled down the bank of the slough, out onto a rotten railroad tie through an obstacle course of brambles and beer cans, and, to my surprise, vanished with a wet slap, proving that this water was still alive.’
    • ‘Crappie and maybe a few largemouth bass had been the alleged focus of this June morning fishing a swamp slough in southeast Texas.’
    • ‘Creeks, sloughs, bayous, and swamps, including a large cypress swamp at the base of Crowley's Ridge, ran around the town.’
    • ‘The book traces the metamorphosis of this endangered ecosystem from rich wetlands to prosperous agricultural area, from saw grass and sloughs to sugar cane, winter vegetables and cattle.’
    • ‘They also migrate through the interior in small numbers, spending time on lakeshores, alkaline ponds, and shores of sloughs and flooded fields.’
    • ‘Conversely, the back lakes, sloughs and bayous are reasonably protected, almost certain to hold pockets of calm, clear water.’
    • ‘Finally, man-made ditches, as well as existing bayous, sloughs, and streams in the St. Francis Watershed, provide suitable habitat for P. capax.’
    • ‘In the California Delta, the levee is the guiding force that funnels the 1,000 miles or so of rivers, sloughs, cuts, marshlands and other waterways through the surrounding terra firma.’
    • ‘Marl prairie occurs within the zone intermediate between the permanently flooded sloughs and the drier pine-dominated high ground.’
    • ‘The thought of the fathoms of water that once covered the very spot she stands on almost suffocates her; she feels bogged down in prairie grass and sloughs; she interiorizes the continental river system as if features of the human body.’
    • ‘He set up a blind in ‘the great marsh’ and a remote camera beside a slough, rigged to take a photo whenever a creature crossed its infrared beam.’
    • ‘Manderson says he was surprised to learn, while looking at old aerial photos, that there used to be a large slough where the Foothills hospital is.’
    • ‘The prairie sloughs are drying up this year but still a great blue heron rises, dips across the road and veers toward storm clouds massing in the west - the sound of one small engine, tires on pavement, turning wheels.’
    • ‘I walked him back down to the slough and heaved a stick into the water.’
    • ‘Thin, faint yellow collars on trunks of cypress and tupelo rimming the old slough recorded the regression of recent flooding in the swamp.’
    • ‘Many also survived in part because of a bird that seeks out the sloughs of the Cache and White Rivers in much the same manner that winter-weary northerners flock to sunnier climes when north winds begin to howl.’
    1. 1.1North American A side channel or inlet, or a natural channel that is only sporadically filled with water.
      • ‘A slough, still wet on one side of the road, dried up on the other.’
      • ‘The Marsh Trail starts from the back side of the ranch's visitor center and winds its way around a series of sloughs where you may spot a river otter.’
      • ‘The mud then spews under the Gapstow Bridge to become a muddy slough that inundates a good part of The Pond, leaving the rest of The Pond aswirl with oil slicks, sludge, and Dixie cups.’
      • ‘Great Blue Herons inhabit sheltered, shallow bays and inlets, sloughs, marshes, wet meadows, shores of lakes, and rivers.’
      • ‘Hiking trails lace the central portion, where the river breaks down into channels and sloughs.’
      • ‘East Texas gets the best of it, and hunters with access to sloughs and river bottoms should reap some of the finest moments that waterfowling has to offer.’
      • ‘The slurry is applied raw, running off into waterways such as creeks, sloughs and ditches and enforcement of manure regulations where runoff is concerned is nothing short of a joke.’
      • ‘Flying in, I had been mesmerized by sinuous curves of sloughs and streams which wove together, then apart, meandering toward the gulf.’
      • ‘In a subsequent survey, Clarke collected from 1 to 10 live specimens at nearly 100 sites located along a 70-km reach of the St. Francis River and an adjunct slough.’
      • ‘Then there were endless chunks of timber washed from the forest floor into the slough when the river flooded once a decade.’
      • ‘As the sun breaks behind the bush into a crystal clear sky, a few wild water buffalo - leftover imports from more than a century ago - wallow in the sloughs on either side of the road.’
      • ‘Although welcome, the heavy rains in eastern Nebraska fell on ground so dry and hard that a substantial portion of the moisture ran off, overflowing some creeks and sloughs.’
      • ‘The time to explore the sloughs, backwaters and tributaries of the Fraser River in an attempt to seek out aggressively feeding cutthroat is upon us.’
      • ‘Cascading water and extensive berming recall the sloughs and dykes on the flat terrain of this Fraser River delta.’
  • 2A situation characterized by lack of progress or activity.

    ‘the economic slough of the interwar years’
    • ‘Gilman's heroine, Dana, is a 38-year-old New York artist in a slough of depression which intensifies when her latest exhibition bombs.’
    • ‘They must face capitalist reality or sink in a slough of socialist delusion, dragging Scotland down with them.’
    • ‘That is making it nearly impossible to craft monetary policy that is both hawkish on inflation, and doesn't throw huge economies deeper into the slough of economic despond.’
    • ‘Getting Africa out of the slough of famine is still an uphill task.’
    • ‘Today, even in the slough of a prolonged depression, it's still the second biggest economy in the world, with a GDP as large as Britain's, France's and Germany's combined.’
    • ‘But for rugby at any rate, it looks as though there is a chance that Scotland may soon exit from the slough of despondency in which we have recently wallowed.’
    • ‘My hope is that we will realize that there was a context to our friend's fall and humbly wonder what might happen to us if we ever found ourselves in a sustained slough of disillusionment, despair and spiritual darkness.’
    • ‘But, in the meantime, he was dragging Greenock up from a slough of despondency and defiantly offering no apologies for snapping up the best available talent.’
    • ‘Part of it was down to the foreordained cycle of his humors, which had dumped him into the slough once again.’
    • ‘He knows that the return of Ilsa can only send Rick into a slough of self-pity, and so Sam contrives to break the fall.’
    • ‘In this, they are merely extending the New Labour ethos on cleaning up the slough that is modern Britain.’
    • ‘While in recent years his work may have fallen into something of a slough of mediocrity, these works are drawn from the period when he was at his strongest, the two decades between 1961 and the early 1980s.’
    • ‘For Scotland's future credibility, teachers need to start promoting politics as a high calling in need of rescuing from the slough of self-serving mediocrity in which it is presently mired.’
    • ‘The late 1980s saw me drift into a slough of depression that again led me back to music, this time the most bleak, unconsoling variety you could imagine.’

Origin

Old English slōh, slō(g), of unknown origin.

Main definitions of slough in English

: slough1slough2

slough2

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1 Shed or remove (a layer of dead skin)

    ‘a snake sloughs off its old skin’
    ‘exfoliate once a week to slough off any dry skin’
    • ‘Outside, the pavement was littered with peeling strips of grayish-white gunk that had sloughed from its sides like dead skin.’
    • ‘The question of when to adhere to standards and when to slough them off in favor of something better is a perennial one in the free software world.’
    • ‘In addition, the gangrenous areas on his toes had sloughed and been replaced almost entirely by healthy tissue.’
    • ‘‘We often neglect the skin on our bodies,’ says Evans, who makes sure to give herself an in-shower sloughing with a body scrub (which can get rid of dead skin cells and make skin smooth) every other day.’
    • ‘Certainly, the ability of landowners to slough taxes onto others turns them from watchdogs of the treasury into raiders, since so much of public spending creates new unearned increments to land value.’
    • ‘The lotion gently sloughs away dead skin cells and leaves your skin feeling as smooth as silk.’
    • ‘Because you are wearing sandals you attend to your feet - slough the dead skin off, cream them, paint their toenails - they therefore look great’
    • ‘In severe cases of trench foot, tissue injury is serious enough to cause skin sloughing and subsequent gangrenous change.’
    • ‘So what we're doing is collecting sloughed skin.’
    • ‘Martin looked at the barman, a balding, pale skinned man whose doughy flesh looked to be sloughing from him like a well boiled dumpling.’
    • ‘Pushing back your cuticles allows the nail to grow with fewer ridges and less scraggly splitting; dead skin is easily sloughed away by the towel.’
    • ‘But, as the play moves back in time, she beautifully sheds guilt and stress like a snake sloughing its skin.’
    • ‘Then it turned into a carnivore, sloughed its armour and acquired a new set of biological and chemical defences.’
    • ‘Eventually the tissue is sloughed at the tentacle tips.’
    • ‘This is in addition to host-derived proteins, such its pancreatic and intestinal enzymes, mucins, glycoproteins, and sloughed epithelial cells.’
    • ‘Having sloughed the oppressive confines of the mine, instinct takes over.’
    • ‘I walked back up the hill to the motel, relieved to have sloughed the prickliness of the pub.’
    • ‘Janet also emphasized more self-care activities and routines of renewal, like warm baths at night and the use of an essential oil salt scrub which sloughs dead cells while filling the room with heavenly plant energy.’
    • ‘Since independence, the yoke of French influence has not entirely been sloughed.’
    • ‘It may take that long for the skin to slough residual mite debris and for the allergic reaction to subside.’
    dispose of, discard, throw away, throw out, get rid of, toss out
    shed, jettison, scrap, cast aside, cast off, repudiate, abandon, relinquish, drop, dispense with, have done with, reject, shrug off, throw on the scrapheap
    chuck, chuck away, chuck out, fling away, dump, ditch, axe, bin, junk, get shut of
    get shot of
    trash
    forsake
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Get rid of (something undesirable or no longer required)
      ‘he is concerned to slough off the country's bad environmental image’
      • ‘It was an attitude that sloughed off responsibility for quality control onto regulatory authorities.’
      • ‘Germany and Japan have, in some measure, sloughed off their post-1945 pacifism.’
      • ‘For I had always held that revenge was a motive alien to modem, civilized man, a primitive drive, a blood-lust that human nature had sloughed off.’
      • ‘Almost the whole of Europe has sloughed off its addiction to the notion of royalty.’
      • ‘But until they slough off that inhibition they will fight the opposition with one hand tied behind their back.’
      • ‘The Indian side appeared famished for most part of the tournament, an outfit that seemed to have sloughed off its competitive edge.’
      • ‘His photographs express his contradictions, his uneasiness about the way he is, they are a way of sloughing off some of that guilt.’
      • ‘Only in death could Kennedy's ` star image ' completely slough off the documented unevenness of his national popularity.’
      • ‘Family shrines are denuded as children of princes, chiefs, priests, village headmen, and elders slough off ancient beliefs and sell or burn a heritage they abhor.’
      • ‘It cannot begin its own work until it has sloughed off all its superstitious regard for the past.’
      • ‘But the country has yet to slough off its planned economy completely.’
      • ‘The twenty-dollar gift may allow him to slough off the backwardness of the Old World.’
      • ‘None of this will persuade committed gay leftists to slough off their own political agenda, nor should it.’
      • ‘In a heartbeat, all responsibility sloughs away.’
      • ‘Once acclimated and having sloughed off her Old World vestiges, she seemed to have turned into an "American."’
      • ‘Major League Baseball has proposed sloughing off a couple of underperforming teams.’
      • ‘Last week, Seagate announced plans to slough off close to 3,000 workers, hoping to improve its bottom line.’
      • ‘Romania supposedly arose in 1989 to slough off communist dictatorship.’
      • ‘Anyone who has ever worked in my shop will verify that I tend to slough off the nasty chores on someone else whenever I can.’
      • ‘The Berlin Wall has fallen, people are more self-interested, the level of interest in politics has waned, sovereignty has been sloughed off, family structures have crumbled.’
    2. 1.2[no object](of dead skin) drop off; be shed.
      • ‘The fine art of exfoliation; what ingredients should I look for when sloughing off dulling, dead skin cells?’
      • ‘This body polish will help boost the skin's circulation and will slough off dead skin cells, leaving a healthy glow.’
      • ‘Coffee grounds can be used to slough away dead skin cells and stimulate circulation.’
      • ‘Skin-nourishing bath ingredients include oatmeal, which softens and exfoliates skin, milk and oil, which contain fat and lock in moisture, and salt, which sloughs off dead skin.’
      • ‘It appears that the bands of fibres can remain intact and functional right up to, or near to, the point at which they are sloughed away with the remaining periderm.’
      • ‘Exfoliating regularly also helps slough off potential milia-causing dead skin cells.’
      • ‘This facial exfoliator uses smooth rice granules mixed into a creamy paste to gently slough off dead, dull skin.’
      • ‘‘The circular motion helps slough away that white membrane, which is dead cuticle skin,’ Kay says.’
      • ‘A loofah aids your detox by stimulating circulation and sloughing off dead cells and other waste that collects on your skin.’
      • ‘Skin may be sloughed off following treatment, but scarring is uncommon.’
      • ‘Body scrubs help slough away dry, dead skin to reveal the baby-soft texture that makes your mate want to reach out and touch.’
      • ‘Friction from rubbing salt over the body improves circulation, sloughs off dead cells, and softens the skin.’
      • ‘Finally the skin sloughs away and the muscles fray out resulting in what resembles a hairy mane.’
      • ‘Three steps: slough away dead skin, moisturize, and protect.’
      • ‘As the outer layer of skin sloughs off, stem cells in the dermis rush to repair and replace those buffed away.’
      • ‘Then a whirring noise started up and a brush ran over my skin, allegedly to encourage the sloughing off of dead cells and to stimulate my circulation.’
      • ‘It really tightens the skin, sloughs off dead cells, and leaves you with a firm, bright complexion.’
      • ‘Nonchemical exfoliators such as alpha-hydroxy acids and beta-hydroxy acids loosen dead skin cells so they slough off more efficiently.’
      • ‘During your bath or shower, let your feet enjoy warm water for a few minutes, then cleanse with a gentle, non-irritating cleanser and a foot brush or washcloth, working between the toes and scrubbing the heels to slough off dead skin.’
      • ‘It's what we reach for to gently slough away dry skin.’
      • ‘This is achieved using an intense pulsed light laser that sloughs off dead skin cells and encourages a new layer of cells to come to the surface.’
    3. 1.3[no object](of soil or rock) collapse or slide into a hole or depression.
      • ‘There, seepage could erode and slough away prized fossil-bearing formations.’

noun

  • The dropping off of dead tissue from living flesh.

    ‘the drugs can cause blistering and slough’
    • ‘When using a nonselcctive enzyme, limit its application to the necrotic or slough tissue and avoid applying it to viable tissue, such as the surrounding wound area.’
    • ‘One challenge is differentiating yellow slough from tendons.’
    • ‘The most common complication of the surgery is skin-flap slough, leading to a recurrence of the problem.’
    • ‘Two types of necrotic tissue may appear in a wound: slough and eschar.’
    • ‘Furthermore, epidermal slough - or separation of epidermis from the dermal layer-has been observed following the placement of frozen allograft on the wound bed.’
    • ‘If the wound bed is partially obscured by slough or eschar, the ability to stage before debridement depends on the type of tissue visualized.’
    • ‘The wound base is 85% slough and 15% granulation tissue.’
    • ‘Typically wounds do not epithelialize until the black/yellow slough has come off the surface and healthy granulation tissue is apparent.’
    • ‘Although no scientific studies are available to support these claims, clinicians report that thin layers of slough or fibrin buildup on the wound bed can be covered with a selective enzymatic debriding agent prior to sponge application.’
    • ‘Eight percent of wounds in the standard care group had black eschar, 42% were covered in yellow slough, and 50% had a red base.’
    • ‘Transparent film dressings maintain a moist environment, promoting granulation tissue formation and autolytic debridement of slough and eschar.’
    • ‘Venous ulcers are typically shallow, irregularly shaped, and contain fibrous slough.’
    • ‘The wound bed was 80% red nongranulation tissue and 20% yellow slough; it was dry with a minimal amount of tan drainage.’
    • ‘The wound bed contains a significant amount of slough, with signs and symptoms of infection, including increased redness and exudate, and pain.’
    • ‘Papain/urea debriding ointment is indicated for the debridement of necrotic tissue and liquefaction of slough in acute and chronic lesions.’
    • ‘Hypertonic saline dressings are not appropriate for minimally draining wounds or wounds covered with dehydrated slough or eschar; these dressings depend on wound moisture to moisten them.’
    • ‘When performing face lifts, plastic surgeons may opt to undermine the skip flap less to decrease the risk of slough, which results in a less than optimal lift.’
    • ‘A variation of the usual procedure may be to undermine the skin flap less, which will help decrease the chance of slough or skin deterioration.’
    • ‘Descriptors such as granulation tissue, slough, or eschar are generally used to define tissue type.’
    • ‘Necrotic tissue, in the form of yellow slough, filled 10% to 20% of all 3 wound beds.’

Origin

Middle English (as a noun denoting a skin, especially the outer skin shed by a snake): perhaps related to Low German slu(we) husk, peel The verb dates from the early 18th century.