Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A soft yellowish or whitish emulsion of butterfat, water, air, and sometimes salt, churned from milk or cream and processed for use in cooking and as a food.
  • n. Any of various substances similar to butter, especially:
  • n. A spread made from fruit, nuts, or other foods: apple butter.
  • n. A vegetable fat having a nearly solid consistency at ordinary temperatures.
  • n. Flattery.
  • transitive v. To put butter on or in.
  • butter up To praise or flatter excessively: You're always buttering up the boss.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A soft, fatty foodstuff made by churning the cream of milk (generally cow's milk).
  • n. Any specific soft substance.
  • n. Any of various foodstuffs made from other foods or oils, similar in consistency to, eaten like or intended as a substitute for butter (preceded by the name of the food used to make it).
  • v. To spread butter on.
  • v. To move one's weight backwards or forwards onto the tips or tails of one's skis or snowboard so only the tip or tail is in contact with the snow.
  • n. Someone who butts; someone who butts in

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An oily, unctuous substance obtained from cream or milk by churning.
  • n. Any substance resembling butter in degree of consistence, or other qualities, especially, in old chemistry, the chlorides, as butter of antimony, sesquichloride of antimony; also, certain concrete fat oils remaining nearly solid at ordinary temperatures, as butter of cacao, vegetable butter, shea butter.
  • n. One who, or that which, butts.
  • transitive v. To cover or spread with butter.
  • transitive v. To increase, as stakes, at every throw or every game.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To smear with butter.
  • To flatter grossly: as, he buttered him to his heart's content.
  • In gambling slang, to stake the previous winnings, with addition, at every throw or every game.
  • In cricket, to fail to make a simple and easy catch; to muff.
  • n. The fatty portion of milk.
  • n. In old chemistry, a term applied to certain anhydrous metallic chlorids of buttery consistence and fusibility.
  • n. One who or that which butts; an animal that butts.
  • n. A machine for sawing off the ends of boards, to square them and remove faulty parts.
  • n. An obsolete form of bittern. Compare butterbump.
  • n. One who has charge of a butt or fire-bucket. See butt, n., 1.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an edible emulsion of fat globules made by churning milk or cream; for cooking and table use
  • n. a fighter who strikes the opponent with his head
  • v. spread butter on

Etymologies

Middle English butere, from Old English, from Latin būtȳrum, from Greek boutūron : bous, cow; see gwou- in Indo-European roots + tūros, cheese; see teuə- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English, from Old English butere ("butter"), from West Germanic *buterô (“butter”) (compare West Frisian buter, Dutch boter, German Butter), from Latin būtȳrum, from Ancient Greek βούτῡρον (boútȳron, "cow cheese"), compound of βοῦς (boûs, "ox, cow") and τῡρός (tyrós, "cheese"), from Scythian (compare Avestan  (tūiri, "curdled milk, whey")), from Proto-Indo-European *tuHrós (compare Middle Indic tūra ("cheese"), Russian творог (tvoróg, "curds, soft cheese"), Old English þweran ("to churn"), ge-þweor ("curds")) (Wiktionary)
butt +‎ -er (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • But it is not so readily digestible as butter is; is more liable to give rise to the butyric acid fermentations in the stomach; is not nearly so appetizing; and its sale as, and under the name of, _butter_ is a fraud which the law rightly forbids and punishes.

    A Handbook of Health

  • Evidently the making of butter was almost totally discontinued, for in his last instructions, completed only a few days before his death, he wrote: "And It is hoped and will be expected, that more effectual measures will be pursued to make butter another year; for it is almost beyond belief, that from 101 Cows actually reported on a late enumeration of the Cattle, that I am obliged to _buy butter_ for the use of my family."

    George Washington: Farmer

  • Mash lightly, then add in butter and continue to mash potatoes until butter is well incorporated.

    Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes | Baking Bites

  • Whisk in butter and a vanilla paste until butter is melted and custard is smooth.

    Archive 2007-09-01

  • Hmm ... butter is definitely yum but I don't know about drinking it; P Seriously - these were * drowning* in butter, and I don't mean a thin film.

    True grits | Homesick Texan

  • In the simplest terms, cocoa butter is the fat in chocolate that makes it melt in your mouth and in your hand.

    What is cocoa butter? | Baking Bites

  • If the butter is a little firmer, that will help, too!

    Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake | Baking Bites

  • Add cold butter and pulse in a food processor (a pastry cutter or a fork will work also) until the butter is the size of small peas.

    Mini Cinnamon Rolls

  • The catch: I used Famous Amos chocolate chip cookies making this a no bake easy-as-pie recipe that comes together in a matter of minutes (as long as your butter is at room temperature!).

    Cookie Sandwiches

  • Extra cocoa butter is added to make baking chocolate.

    Did You Know? - Mexico Gave Chocolate To The World

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • I can't believe it's not Stonehenge.

    November 17, 2013

  • For your consideration: http://m.imgur.com/boUQ0Kw

    November 16, 2013

  • to cheat or defraud in a smooth or plausible Manner; as, He'll not be Battered; He's aware of your Design, He's upon his Guard,

    May 9, 2009

  • I can believe that, fbh.

    September 20, 2008

  • formed around the Greek word for cheese - turos bouturon

    September 20, 2008

  • Taken at Yorktown, "300 firkins butter." A week or two later, the official report added another "361 firkins butter, (weight) 19,870 lb."

    October 29, 2007

  • That's a tough one.

    September 12, 2007

  • Betty Botta bought some butter,
    "But," said she, "my butter's bitter.
    If I put it in my batter,
    It will make my batter bitter;
    But a better bit of butter
    Will but make my batter better."
    So she bought some better butter,
    Put it in her bitter batter,
    Made her bitter batter better.
    So 'twas better Betta Botta
    Bought a bit of better butter!

    --Tongue Twisters and Tricky Tanglers by Duncan Emrich

    September 11, 2007