If a liquid is dark and murky and you can't see through it, it's turbid. It’s usually used as a criticism — a turbid river is generally a polluted one, but then again a good pint of real ale should be turbid. Go figure.

Turbid comes from the Latin word turbidus, which means "muddy, full of confusion." Although it’s usually used to describe liquid, like that turbid creek your rain boot disappeared in, it can also be used to describe writing that’s unclear. If your teacher says your essay for English is turbid, it’s time to go back to work! Outlines and thesis statements can help clear up turbid prose.

Definitions of turbid
  1. adjective
    (of liquids) clouded as with sediment
    synonyms: cloudy, mirky, muddy, murky
    not transmitting or reflecting light or radiant energy; impenetrable to sight
Commonly confused words

turbid / turgid

Turbid can refer to something thick with suspended matter, while turgid means swollen or bombastic.

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Word Family

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