Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

sterile - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



Thesaurus diagram

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

adjective     sterile pronunciation in British English
  1. 1
    completely clean, with no bacteria

    Make sure that the needles are sterile.

    Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    someone who is sterile is not able to produce children

    He was sterile due to a childhood illness.

  3. 4
    land that is sterile cannot have any crops grown on it

derived word

quiz invitation
  • Facebook
  • Twitter


the practice of looking at a product online before going to a conventional store to buy it

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


a person who has or claims to have a lot of influence

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play