Pronunciation: (dust),[key] —n. 1. earth or other matter in fine, dry particles.
2. a cloud of finely powdered earth or other matter in the air.
3. any finely powdered substance, as sawdust.
4. the ground; the earth's surface.
5. the substance to which something, as the dead human body, is ultimately reduced by disintegration or decay; earthly remains.
6. Brit. a. ashes, refuse, etc.
b. junk1 (def. 1).
7. a low or humble condition.
8. anything worthless.
9. disturbance; turmoil.
10. See gold dust. 11. the mortal body of a human being.
12. a single particle or grain.
13. Archaic.money; cash.
14. bite the dust, a. to be killed, esp. in battle; die.
b. to suffer defeat; be unsuccessful; fail: Another manufacturer has bitten the dust. 15. leave one in the dust, to overtake and surpass a competitor or one who is less ambitious, qualified, etc.: Don't be so meek, they'll leave you in the dust. 16. lick the dust, a. to be killed; die.
b. to humble oneself abjectly; grovel: He will resign rather than lick the dust. 17. make the dust fly, to execute with vigor or speed: We turned them loose on the work, and they made the dust fly. 18. shake the dust from one's feet, to depart in anger or disdain; leave decisively or in haste, esp. from an unpleasant situation: As the country moved toward totalitarianism, many of the intelligentsia shook the dust from their feet. 19. throw dust in someone's eyes, to mislead; deceive: He threw dust in our eyes by pretending to be a jeweler and then disappeared with the diamonds.
—v.t. 1. to wipe the dust from: to dust a table. 2. to sprinkle with a powder or dust: to dust rosebushes with an insecticide. 3. to strew or sprinkle (a powder, dust, or other fine particles): to dust insecticide on a rosebush. 4. to soil with dust; make dusty.
—v.i. 1. to wipe dust from furniture, woodwork, etc.
2. to become dusty.
3. to apply dust or powder to a plant, one's body, etc.: to dust with an insecticide in late spring. 4. dust off, a. Baseball.(of a pitcher) to throw the ball purposely at or dangerously close to (the batter).
b. to take out or prepare for use again, as after a period of inactivity or storage: I'm going to dust off my accounting skills and try to get a job in the finance department. c. to beat up badly: The gang of hoodlums dusted off a cop.