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

  • n. A putrescent character or condition.
  • n. Putrid matter.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The condition of being putrid; decay
  • n. Putrid matter

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The state of being putrescent; putrescent matter.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Putrescent character or condition; tendency to putridity or decay; a putrid state.

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

  • n. in a state of progressive putrefaction
  • n. the quality of rotting and becoming putrid


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • As in the alcoholic, lactic, or butyric ferments, the process set up is shown to be dependent upon and concurrent with the vegetative processes of the demonstrated organisms characterizing these ferments; so it can be shown with equal clearness and certainty that the entire process of what is known as putrescence is equally and as absolutely dependent on the vital processes of a given and discoverable series of organisms.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 643, April 28, 1888

  • Such mysterious things, which we ought perhaps to call the putrescence of the human heart, lie at the base of the greatest revolutions, political, social or domestic; but in telling of them it is desirable to explain that their subtle significance cannot be given in a matter-of-fact narrative.

    The Celibates

  • Is it bad that as soon as I read "putrescence" I started envisioning the Princess Bride....

    Purging the Evil Within

  • I look back with great fondness, espescially my 'shallow-grave' experience I had at the age of 9, where our group came across disturbed earth out near 'our' club-place in the suburbs of Houston accompanied by the smell of putrescence ...

    The Tobolowsky Files Ep. 22 - The Dangerous Animals Club | /Film

  • I think you maybe meant to say "Tilda Swinton was the the only gleam of light in the ambivalent putrescence of bad acting, choppy 'plot,' and butchered source material of 'Constantine.'"

    After the Relapse

  • Spock closed his awareness to the input of his body—the darkness before his eyes, the damp chill against his face, the undercurrent of putrescence assailing his nostrils—and searched for whatever perceptions had reached his unconscious mind.

    Star Trek: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts of Empire

  • Smug satisfaction disguises an unmistakable putrescence.

    Strangers at Home

  • All of this, it is like a stench that fills my nostrils to overflowing, a torrent of putrescence that I either have to swim in or drown in ... and I watch those around me glut themselves upon it and ask for more.

    September 9th, 2007

  • Just look at this hulking terror, poised to pounce on common decency and smother it with its blue-smeared putrescence.

    Archive 2009-05-01

  • Their putrescence is evident, their stagnation is unhealthy, their fermentation infects people with fever, and etiolates them; their multiplication becomes a plague of Egypt.

    Les Miserables


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