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

  • noun The fluid consisting of plasma, blood cells, and platelets that is circulated by the heart through the vertebrate vascular system, carrying oxygen and nutrients to and waste materials away from all body tissues.
  • noun A similar fluid in animals other than vertebrates.
  • noun The juice or sap of certain plants.
  • noun A vital or animating force; lifeblood.
  • noun One of the four humors of ancient and medieval physiology, identified with the blood found in blood vessels, and thought to cause cheerfulness.
  • noun Bloodshed; murder.
  • noun Temperament or disposition.
  • noun Descent from a common ancestor; parental lineage.
  • noun Family relationship; kinship.
  • noun Descent from noble or royal lineage.
  • noun Recorded descent from purebred stock.
  • noun National or racial ancestry.
  • noun A dandy.
  • transitive verb To give (a hunting dog) its first taste of blood.
  • transitive verb To subject (troops) to experience under fire.
  • transitive verb To initiate by subjecting to an unpleasant or difficult experience.
  • idiom (bad blood) Long-standing animosity.
  • idiom (in cold blood) Deliberately, coldly, and dispassionately.
  • idiom (in (one's) blood) So characteristic as to seem inherited or passed down by family tradition.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The fluid which circulates in the arteries and veins.
  • noun . Blood that is shed; bloodshed; slaughter; murder.
  • noun The responsibility or guilt of shedding the blood of others.
  • noun From being popularly regarded as the fluid in which more especially the life resides, as the seat of feelings, passions, hereditary qualities, etc., the word blood has come to be used typically, or with certain associated ideas, in a number of different ways.
  • noun Fleshly nature; the carnal part of man, as opposed to the spiritual nature or divine life.
  • noun Temper of mind; natural disposition; high spirit; mettle; passion; anger: in this sense often accompanied with cold or warm, or other qualifying word. Thus, to commit an act in cold blood is to do it deliberately and without sudden passion. Hot or warm blood denotes a temper inflamed or irritated; to warm or heat the blood is to excite the passions.
  • noun A man of fire or spirit; a hot spark; a rake.
  • noun Persons of any specified race, nationality, or family, considered collectively.
  • noun Birth; extraction; parentage; breed; absolutely, high birth; good extraction: often qualified by such adjectives as good, base, etc.
  • noun One who inherits the blood of another; child; collectively, offspring; progeny.
  • noun Relationship by descent from a common ancestor; consanguinity; lineage; kindred; family.
  • noun That which resembles blood; the juice of anything, especially if red: as, “the blood of grapes,” Gen. xlix. 11.
  • noun A disease in cattle.
  • noun A commercial name for red coral.
  • noun Offspring; progeny; child or children: as, one's own flesh and blood should be preferred to strangers.
  • noun To be put to death.
  • To let blood from; bleed by opening a vein.
  • To stain with blood.
  • Hence To give a taste of blood; inure to the sight of blood.
  • To heat the blood of; excite; exasperate.
  • To victimize; extract money from (a person); bleed.
  • In leather-coloring, to apply a coating of blood to, in order to obtain a good black.
  • noun In animal-breeding, and by analogy in plant-breeding, the peculiar character of an individual conceived as transmissible.

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

  • transitive verb obsolete To bleed.
  • transitive verb Archaic To stain, smear or wet, with blood.
  • transitive verb To give (hounds or soldiers) a first taste or sight of blood, as in hunting or war.
  • transitive verb obsolete To heat the blood of; to exasperate.


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

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

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English blod, Old English blōd, Proto-Germanic *blōþan, of uncertain origin. Cognate with West Frisian bloed, Dutch bloed, German Blut, Danish blod, Swedish blod.


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  • Of all possible results to place at number two (down from number one last night), image search comes up with a still from a pornographic/horror film called Blood Lake. I think WeirdNet must have got it into its clutches.

    October 9, 2008

  • found in award-winning hangover soup, along with some fuzzy-looking organ, the fuzz thereof being--as it turns out--a great conduit for dipping sauce

    July 18, 2009

  • Yuck. I would thank you for the link, but it made me sick.

    July 18, 2009

  • It makes me the opposite of sick, whatever that is. Healthy! That's what that pic makes me. YUM!

    July 18, 2009

  • the soup LOOKS pretty innocuous, I think. if that 'blood pudding' caption wasn't there, it could easily be miso or something

    July 18, 2009

  • I'm going to disregard yarb's comment for the sake of my half-digested breakfast. And you're probably right, madmouth, about the caption. It reminds me of a Filipino dish (the name escapes me) of pork, cooked in its own blood that's used for sauce.

    July 18, 2009

  • It looked good to me. I didn't read the caption and figured it was just soup. :)

    July 18, 2009

  • Ok. That's it. You're all certifiably insane!! I may have a delicate palette, but that's just-

    July 18, 2009

  • this reminds me of kosher law, which is said to have arisen as a prohibition against the popular Egyptian dish of calf cooked in its mother's milk. it's ALL cultural; I've seen Koreans, who enjoy lots of live seafood--the highest mark of freshness being a fish, filleted, whose gills are still working when it's placed on the table--make a retching face at the notion of Portuguese salted cod eye on toast. the sense of the yuck is full of contradictions instilled by one's cultural environment. I mean, are cow muscles and cow blood so very different?

    July 18, 2009

  • I have to admit, you have a point about the culture. Thank God for cultural diversity then! 8) But for the record, cow muscle is VERY different from cow blood, maybe psychological, but still...

    July 18, 2009

  • I think you meant to say palate. And I take umbrage at being called insane for liking soup. Umbrage, I say!

    (Note: See marathon of phony umbrage taking.)

    July 18, 2009

  • Yes, must excuse my spelling. It has always been atrocious. And I take umbrage at you taking umbrage. *sulkily folds arms and turns back, pouting*

    July 19, 2009

  • it's a cliche to say it, but the sanitized steak in plastic wrap has separated the North American imagination from what meat is, from the gruesomeness of muscle. strangely, blood, when it's cooked, loses its scary aspect; it congeals into the form of a piece of liver.

    July 19, 2009

  • I am not sure if I hate the meaning or the sound of the word more. Ick! :-(

    February 6, 2010

  • Oh, ew. The Century has given us this gem: "In leather-coloring, to apply a coating of blood to, in order to obtain a good black."

    December 2, 2021

  • (No mention of using soup as a dye for leather, though.)

    December 2, 2021

  • Citation on cudgel-playing.

    January 17, 2022