SKIP TO CONTENT

litter

If everyone decided to litter, or drop trash on the ground, the world would be covered in garbage. Litter doesn't always have to be trashy though. When a cat has kittens, they are born as a litter.

Don't be confused when you go to England and see the word litter written all over garbage cans. That's just the Brits' way of saying trash. The word litter comes from the Old French litiere meaning "bed." Animals like dogs or cats have their offspring all in one birth, or on the same bed, making what we call a litter, or group of babies.

Definitions of litter
  1. noun
    rubbish carelessly dropped or left about (especially in public places)
    see moresee less
    type of:
    garbage, refuse, rubbish, scrap, trash
    worthless material that is to be disposed of
  2. verb
    make a place messy by strewing garbage around
    see moresee less
    type of:
    disseminate, straw, strew
    spread by scattering ("straw" is archaic)
  3. verb
    strew
    “Cigar butts littered the ground”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    be
    have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)
  4. noun
    the offspring at one birth of a multiparous mammal
    see moresee less
    type of:
    animal group
    a group of animals
  5. noun
    material used to provide a bed for animals
    synonyms: bedding, bedding material
    see moresee less
    type of:
    material, stuff
    the tangible substance that goes into the makeup of a physical object
  6. verb
    give birth to a litter of animals
    see moresee less
    type of:
    bear, birth, deliver, give birth, have
    cause to be born
  7. noun
    conveyance consisting of a chair or bed carried on two poles by bearers
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 6 types...
    hide 6 types...
    covered couch
    a litter with a cover for privacy
    palankeen, palanquin
    a closed litter carried on the shoulders of four bearers
    sedan, sedan chair
    a closed litter for one passenger
    stretcher
    a litter for transporting people who are ill or wounded or dead; usually consists of a sheet of canvas stretched between two poles
    gurney
    a metal stretcher with wheels
    jampan
    a kind of sedan chair used in India
    type of:
    conveyance, transport
    something that serves as a means of transportation
Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

ACT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week