from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A thick, sweet, sticky liquid, consisting of a sugar base, natural or artificial flavorings, and water.
  • noun A thick, sugary liquid made by boiling down or otherwise concentrating plant sap, juice, or grain extracts.
  • noun A concentrated solution of sugar in water, often used as a vehicle for medicine.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To sweeten with syrup; cover or mix with a syrup.
  • noun In cookery, a boiled solution of sugar and water in which fruits are often cooked.
  • noun In medicine, a solution of sugar in water, made according to an officinal formula, whether simple, flavored, or medicated with some special therapeutic or compound.
  • noun The uncrystallizable fluid finally separated from crystallized sugar in the refining process, either by the draining of sugar in loaves, or by being forcibly ejected by the centrifugal apparatus in preparing moist sugar.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Same as sirup, sirupy.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any thick liquid that is added to or poured over food as a flavouring and has a high sugar content. Also any viscous liquid.
  • noun A wig.

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

  • noun a thick sweet sticky liquid


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

[Middle English sirup, from Old French sirop, from Medieval Latin siropus, from Arabic šarāb, from šariba, to drink; see śrb in Semitic roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Old French sirop, from Arabic شراب (šarāb, "beverage"), from شرب (šáriba, "to drink"). Related to sorbet, sherbet.


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word syrup.



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

  • See this map for American pronunciation.

    April 11, 2008

  • From personal experience, I find the results highly suspect.

    April 11, 2008

  • Based on the map, people in Nevada don't like syrup.

    April 11, 2008

  • The problem is that the maps just count responses. So a ton of respondents, it appears, come from the Northeast; ergo, every pronunciation appears concentrated in the Northeast.

    What they ought to map, by color, is the relative proportion of responses received so far from a given region (state, city, whatnot).

    So: Points for neat research idea, marked down for information-poor illustration of results.

    April 11, 2008

  • Here in my local whatnot, the preferred pronunciation of whatnot is whaughtnought, while a majority of people say ot, when they really ought to say ought.

    Go figger!

    Meanwhile, the states of Montana and Wyoming continue to be sparsely populated.

    April 11, 2008