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[welt] /wɛlt/
a ridge or wale on the surface of the body, as from a blow of a stick or whip.
a blow producing such a ridge or wale.
  1. a strip, as of leather, set in between the outsole of a shoe and the edges of its insole and upper, through which these parts are joined by stitching or stapling.
  2. a strip, usually of leather, that ornaments a shoe.
a strengthening or ornamental finish along a seam, the edge of a garment, etc.
a seam in which one edge is cut close to the stitching line and covered by the other edge, which is stitched over it.
verb (used with object)
to beat soundly, as with a stick or whip.
to furnish or supply (a shoe or garment) with a welt or welts; sew a welt on to.
verb (used without object)
to be marked with or develop welts.
Origin of welt
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English welte, walt shoemaker's welt, Old English wælt (thigh) sinew
Related forms
unwelted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for welts
  • Most bed bug bites are initially painless, but later turn into large, itchy skin welts.
  • Bed bugs feed on human blood which can cause itching and welts.
  • However, on sensitive people it can produce large, itchy welts on the skin.
  • However, it can produce large, itchy welts on the skin.
  • Red, itchy welts on the skin may also be an indication that bed bugs are present.
  • Red itchy welts are an indication of an infestation.
  • However, some people are more sensitive to the bites and develop itchy, red welts.
  • Some people do not react to their bites, but other people will have itchy, or painful welts.
  • They can produce painful stings and large red welts and may cause blindness in pets.
  • Bed bugs do not transmit diseases, but their bites can become red, itchy welts.
British Dictionary definitions for welts


a raised or strengthened seam or edge, sewn in or on a knitted garment
another word for weal1
(in shoemaking) a strip of leather, etc, put in between the outer sole and the inner sole and upper
verb (transitive)
to put a welt in (a garment, etc)
to beat or flog soundly
Word Origin
C15: origin unknown
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for welts



early 15c., a shoemaker's term, perhaps related to Middle English welten "to overturn, roll over" (c.1300), from Old Norse velta "to roll" (related to welter (v.)). Meaning "ridge on the skin from a wound" is first recorded 1800.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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welts in Medicine

welt (wělt)

  1. A ridge or bump on the skin caused by a lash or blow or sometimes by an allergic reaction.

  2. See wheal.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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