From Middle English syften, from Old English siftan, from Proto-Germanic *siftijaną.
sift (third-person singular simple present sifts, present participle sifting, simple past and past participle sifted)
- To sieve or strain (something).
- To separate or scatter (things) as if by sieving.
- To examine (something) carefully.
- [+object] (archaic or old-fashioned) To scrutinise (someone or something) carefully so as to find the truth.
- [+ through (object)] To carefully go through a set of objects, or a collection of information, in order to find something.