Definition of algid
algid was our Word of the Day on 12/19/2012. Hear the podcast!
Examples of algid in a Sentence
the rescuers searching the algid waters of the Bering Sea
Did You Know?
Algid is a rather cold and lonely word, etymologically speaking-it's the only word in any of the dictionaries we publish that comes from the Latin word algēre, meaning "to feel cold." Also, English speakers have warmed to its many synonyms-among them "cold," "frigid," "arctic," "chill"-much more readily than they've taken to "algid." Even its compatriot, "gelid"-also a Latin-derived adjective that can describe ice and arctic temperatures-has managed to outpace it in most decades of the approximately 400 years the words have been in use. In one context, though, "algid" does something its synonyms don't: it describes a severe form of malaria that is marked by prostration, cold and clammy skin, and low blood pressure-a meaning that probably hasn't done much to endear the more general use to speakers of English.
Origin and Etymology of algid
Latin algidus, from algēre to feel cold
First Known Use: circa 1623
Medical Definition of algid
: marked by prostration, cold and clammy skin, and low blood pressure—used chiefly of a severe form of malaria
Learn More about algid
Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for algid
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up algid? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).