As a noun, spume means the froth you find on sea water. As a verb, it means to make frothy, as in...well...frothy seawater.

If you've ever wondered why seawater produces so much froth, note that the bubbles come from high concentrations of surfactants, or organic material in the water. The spuming, or bubbling action happens when breaking waves introduce air into the water and then trap it in bubble form. To remember spume, just think about the foam that washes up on the beach and sticks there for a time. You could be forgiven for thinking of it as what the ocean spews forth.

Definitions of spume
  1. noun
    foam or froth on the sea
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    type of:
    foam, froth
    a mass of small bubbles formed in or on a liquid
  2. verb
    make froth or foam and become bubbly
    synonyms: froth, suds
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    type of:
    create, make
    make or cause to be or to become
Commonly confused words

Eleanor Catton Wins Man Booker Prize With "Spume"

Eleanor Catton, who was awarded the Man Booker Prize earlier this week for her novel The Luminaries, uses the rare and interesting spume.

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Word Family