Definition of debris in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈdɛbriː/
Pronunciation: /ˈdeɪbriː/


[mass noun]
1Scattered pieces of rubbish or remains: workmen were clearing the roads of the debris from shattered buildings leaves and garden debris
More example sentences
  • The plane came down about 100 yards from a row of terrace houses, showering some gardens with debris.
  • Fire services and Gardai also attended the scene of the crash and debris was scattered over both sides of the road.
  • Some of the bodies remained under debris as rescue workers cleared rubble.
detritus, refuse, rubbish, waste, waste matter, discarded matter, litter, scrap, dross, chaff, flotsam and jetsam, lumber, rubble, wreckage, spoilage;
remains, remnants, fragments, scraps, dregs, offscourings, odds and ends;
North American  trash, garbage;
Australian/New Zealand  mullock
informal dreck, junk
British informal grot, gash, odds and sods, gubbins
vulgar slang shit, crap
Archaeology  debitage
rare draff, raffle, raff, cultch, orts
1.1Loose natural material consisting especially of broken pieces of rock: a stable arrangement of planets, comets, and debris orbiting the sun
More example sentences
  • As the ice moves it can erode or excavate large quantities of the rock and unconsolidated debris on which it rests.
  • Turbulent tides have churned up the sea bed, disturbing rocks and natural debris such as drift wood.
  • Why then was there so little accumulation of sedimentary rock and debris on the ocean floor?


Early 18th century: from French débris, from obsolete débriser 'break down'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: deb¦ris

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