from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To emit or lose blood.
  • intransitive verb To be wounded, especially in battle.
  • intransitive verb To feel sympathetic grief or anguish.
  • intransitive verb To exude a fluid such as sap.
  • intransitive verb To pay out money, especially an exorbitant amount.
  • intransitive verb To run together or be diffused, as dyes in wet cloth.
  • intransitive verb To undergo or be subject to such a diffusion of color.
  • intransitive verb To show through a layer of paint, as a stain or resin in wood.
  • intransitive verb To be printed so as to go off the edge or edges of a page after trimming.
  • intransitive verb To take or remove blood from.
  • intransitive verb To extract sap or juice from.
  • intransitive verb To draw liquid or gaseous contents from; drain.
  • intransitive verb To draw off (liquid or gaseous matter) from a container.
  • intransitive verb To obtain money from, especially by improper means.
  • intransitive verb To drain of all valuable resources.
  • intransitive verb To cause (an illustration, for example) to bleed.
  • intransitive verb To trim (a page, for example) so closely as to mutilate the printed or illustrative matter.
  • noun An instance of bleeding.
  • noun Illustrative matter that bleeds.
  • noun A page trimmed so as to bleed.
  • noun The part of the page that is trimmed off.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To allow an escape of (liquid or gas) through a cock or valve from a higher pressure to a lower.
  • In making turpentine, to obtain resin from (living trees) by cutting into them.
  • To void or emit blood; drop, or run with, blood: as, the wound bled profusely; his nose bleeds.
  • Figuratively, to feel pity, sorrow, or anguish; be filled with sympathy or grief: with for: as, my heart bleeds for him.
  • To come to light: in allusion to the old superstitious belief that the body of a murdered person would begin to bleed if the murderer approached it.
  • To shed one's blood; be severely wounded or die, as in battle or the like.
  • To lose sap, gum, or juice, as a tree or a vine.
  • To pay or lose money freely; be subjected to extortion of money: as, they made him bleed freely for that whim.
  • In dyeing, to be washed out: said of the color of a dyed fabric when it stains water in which it is immersed.
  • To leak; become leaky.
  • To yield; produce: applied to grain.
  • To cause to lose blood, as by wounding; take blood from by opening a vein, as in phlebotomy.
  • To lose, as blood; emit or distil, as juice, sap, or gum.
  • To extort or exact money from; sponge on: as, the sharpers bled him freely.
  • In dyeing, to extract the coloring matter from (a dye-drug).
  • In bookbinding, to trim the margin of (a book) so closely as to mutilate the print.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To let blood from; to take or draw blood from, as by opening a vein.
  • transitive verb To lose, as blood; to emit or let drop, as sap.
  • transitive verb colloq. To draw money from (one); to induce to pay.
  • intransitive verb To emit blood; to lose blood; to run with blood, by whatever means.
  • intransitive verb To withdraw blood from the body; to let blood.
  • intransitive verb To lose or shed one's blood, as in case of a violent death or severe wounds; to die by violence.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English bleden, from Old English blēdan; see bhel- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old English blēdan, from Proto-Germanic *blōþijanan (“to bleed”), from Proto-Germanic *blōþan (“blood”).


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