Definition of swathe noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//sweɪð//
    ; NAmE NAmE//sweɪð//
    (also swath
    BrE BrE//swɒθ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//swɑːθ//
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  1. 1a long strip of land, especially one on which the plants or crops have been cut The combine had cut a swathe around the edge of the field. Development has affected vast swathes of our countryside.
  2. 2a large strip or area of something The mountains rose above a swathe of thick cloud.
  3. Word Originnoun Old English swæth, swathu ‘track, trace’, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch zwad(e) and German Schwade. In Middle English the term denoted a measure of the width of grassland, probably reckoned by a sweep of the mower's scythe.Extra examples The Great Plains of the US cover a vast swathe of land. The front door was open and a swathe of sunlight lay across the floor. The rainforest forms a swathe of jungle in West Africa. The war had cut a swathe of destruction across northern France.Idioms
    cut a swathe through something
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    (of a person, fire, etc.) to pass through a particular area destroying a large part of it Building the tunnel would involve cutting a great swathe through the forest.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: swathe

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