1 tr. sieve (material) into finer and coarser parts.
2 tr. (usu. foll. by from, out) separate (finer or coarser parts) from material.
3 tr. sprinkle (esp. sugar) from a perforated container.
4 tr. examine (evidence, facts, etc.) in order to assess authenticity etc.
5 intr. (of snow, light, etc.) fall as if from a sieve.
Phrases and idioms:
sift through examine by sifting.
sifter n. (also in comb.).
Etymology: OE siftan f. WG

Useful english dictionary. 2012.

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  • sift — [ sıft ] verb transitive 1. ) to pour a dry substance through a sieve to remove the large pieces 2. ) sift or sift through to examine information, documents, etc. in order to find what you are looking for: Sift every grain of information until… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Sift — Sift, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Sifted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Sifting}.] [AS. siftan, from sife sieve. [root]151a. See {Sieve}.] 1. To separate with a sieve, as the fine part of a substance from the coarse; as, to sift meal or flour; to sift powder; to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sift — [sıft] v [T] [: Old English; Origin: siftan] 1.) to put flour, sugar etc through a sieve or similar container in order to remove large pieces 2.) also sift through to examine information, documents etc carefully in order to find something out or… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • sift — [sift] vt. [ME siften < OE siftan < sife, SIEVE] 1. to pass through a sieve so as to separate the coarse from the fine particles, or to break up lumps, as of flour 2. to scatter (a pulverized substance) by or as by the use of a sieve 3. to… …   English World dictionary

  • sift — /sift/, v.t. 1. to separate and retain the coarse parts of (flour, ashes, etc.) with a sieve. 2. to scatter or sprinkle through or by means of a sieve: to sift sugar onto cake. 3. to separate by or as if by a sieve. 4. to examine closely: The… …   Universalium

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  • sift — O.E. siftan pass something through a sieve, related to sife (see SIEVE (Cf. sieve)). Cf. Du. ziften, M.L.G. sichten, Ger. sichten to sift. Metaphoric sense of look carefully through first recorded 1530s …   Etymology dictionary

  • sift — ► VERB 1) put (a dry substance) through a sieve so as to remove lumps or large particles. 2) examine thoroughly to isolate what is important or useful. 3) (sift down) (of snow, ash, etc.) descend lightly or sparsely. ► NOUN ▪ an act of sifting.… …   English terms dictionary

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