The word "rot" is used when something organic (alive) begins the process of decay. It’s similar to the word "spoil." When "rot" a verb, it looks like this:
- Apples rot quickly when they fall from a tree.
- When food rots, you have to throw it away.
- Meat will rot if you don’t keep it refrigerated or frozen.
- We watered the plant too often and the roots rotted.
- Matt’s teeth are rotting because he doesn’t brush them regularly.
- When wood begins to rot, it becomes an attractive home for insects.
Your teeth will rot if you don’t take care of them.
You can also use "rot" as a noun:
- There’s some rot on this apple.
- Signs of rot on the outside of a wooden house should be addressed immediately.
- The green rot on old bread is called mold.
As an adjective, you can use "rotten," "rotted," or "rotting."
- When meat becomes rotten it really stinks.
- There’s nothing worse than the smell of rotting meat.
- Rotted banana peels outside the house indicate the owners don’t clean up after themselves.
- That was a really rotten thing that he did to his girlfriend. (Behavior is often described as "rotten" if it’s really bad.)
- This is a rotten situation. (It’s a bad situation.)
Now try this quick quiz:
The answers are below.
Click here to go to the Word of the Day page.
1. rotten; 2. rot; 3. rotten; 4. rot; 5.
This page was first published on May 17, 2012. It was updated on January 21, 2016.