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Definition of "winnow" [win•now]

  • To separate the chaff from (grain) by means of a current of air. (verb-transitive)
  • To rid of undesirable parts. (verb-transitive)
  • To blow (chaff) off or away. (verb-transitive)
  • To blow away; scatter. (verb-transitive)
  • To blow on; fan: a breeze winnowing the tall grass. (verb-transitive)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "winnow" in a sentence
  • "So he will return to those issues and try to kind of winnow down the states that he pays attention to."
  • "Minister of Law and Order Hernus Kriel on Monday rejected out of hand an African National Congress statement that the transitional executive council should "winnow" racist policemen from the South"
  • "When dried they are separated from the dust and partly from the outward membranous coat by means of a kind of winnow, and are then laid up in warehouses."