\ ˈblü How to pronounce blue (audio) \
bluer; bluest

Definition of blue

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : of the color whose hue is that of the clear sky : of the color blue (see blue entry 2 sense 1) a blue jacket her bright blue eyes The house is blue with white shutters.
2a : bluish the blue haze of tobacco smoke
b : discolored by or as if by bruising blue with cold
c : bluish gray a blue cat
3a : low in spirits : melancholy has been feeling blue
b : marked by low spirits : depressing a blue funk things looked blue
4 : wearing blue the blue team
5 of a woman : learned, intellectual … the ladies were very blue and well-informed …— W. M. Thackeray
6 : puritanical … a blue Sunday city …— James Street
7a : profane, indecent a blue movie
b : off-color, risqué blue jokes
8 music : of, relating to, or used in blues (see blues sense 3) a blue song
9 US politics : tending to support Democratic candidates or policies As has become increasingly clear over the past few general elections, with their red states and blue states, an American Presidential campaign is no longer truly national.— Hendrik Hertzberg — compare purple sense 3, red sense 5
blue in the face
: extremely exasperated argued until he was blue in the face



Definition of blue (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a color whose hue is that of the clear sky or that of the portion of the color spectrum lying between green and violet Blue is his favorite color. shades of blue
2a : a pigment or dye that colors blue
b : bluing adding blue to the laundry
3a : blue clothing or cloth will be wearing blue
b blues plural : a blue costume or uniform wearing their dress blues
4a : a Union soldier in the American Civil War
b often capitalized : the Union army the Blue versus the Gray
5a(1) : sky
(2) : the far distance disappeared into the blue
b : sea
6 : a blue object
7 : bluestocking praised the writings of her fellow blues
8 biology : any of numerous small chiefly blue butterflies (family Lycaenidae)
9 : bluefish fishing for blues
11 physics : one of the three colors (see color entry 1 sense 15) that quarks have in the theory of quantum chromodynamics One cannot have a single quark on its own because it would have a color (red, green, or blue). Instead, a red quark has to be joined to a green and a blue quark by a "string" of gluons (red + green + blue = white). Such a triplet constitutes a proton or a neutron.— Stephen Hawking
out of the blue
: without advance notice : unexpectedly the job offer came out of the blue


blued; blueing or bluing; blues

Definition of blue (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make (something) blue in color: such as
a : to dye, tint, or paint (something) blue Last, the generation of the grandmothers, in immaculately blued hair …— John Updike Tattoos blued his upper arms.— Jerry Spinelli
b : to heat (iron or steel) to about 550 to 600 degrees Fahrenheit so that it acquires a protective bluish coating the blued barrel of the gun Between banks shrouded with snow, the river gleamed darkly, like blued steel with gold chips of sunlight dancing on each riffle.— Pete Bodo

intransitive verb

: to turn blue their blueing fingers
blue the air
: to curse angrily He sliced the air with his fists and blued the air with his mouth.— Steve Kelley I have been stealing my father's copy (of Massachusetts Wildlife) for a long time, but last week he found an issue on my desk and blued the air a bit.— Stephen King Donovan

Other Words from blue


bluely adverb
blueness noun

Examples of blue in a Sentence

Adjective shocked at the blue banter she heard on that satellite-radio talk show a cold, dreary day always leaves me blue Noun Her favorite color is blue. a mixture of blues and greens They sailed off into the blue.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Rock legend Bruce Springsteen has positioned himself over the decades as a man of the people, the voice for the blue-collar worker. Rodney Ho, ajc, 27 July 2022 The film follows Jack Nicholson’s Bobby Dupea, a former piano prodigy who has turned his back on his privileged lifestyle to embrace the life of a blue collar drifter. Brent Lang, Variety, 26 July 2022 The color scheme is brown and beige; the diverse, largely blue-collar clientele who line up for lunch every day are a glad-handing politician’s dream; the menus rarely stray from short-order classics and local specialties. Helen Rosner, The New Yorker, 22 July 2022 That was a pivotal era, when globalization, automation, and a growing service industry led to huge losses in mining, manufacturing, and other blue-collar sectors. Ed Yong, The Atlantic, 21 July 2022 Jonathan Kuminga will likely get more minutes with the loss of Payton II, the team's top perimeter defender, but Looney is just blue-collar who thrives in his role. Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, 20 July 2022 Granite City is a longtime Democratic blue-collar town that threw its support behind Trump. Caroline Kitchener, Anchorage Daily News, 15 July 2022 The pair, who grew up about an hour away from the Hamptons in Stony Brook, New York with their blue collar father who worked as a project manager on construction jobs, conceived Bespoke as a new kind of brokerage. Luisa Kroll, Forbes, 15 July 2022 Granite City is a longtime Democratic blue-collar town that threw its support behind Trump. Caroline Kitchener, Washington Post, 14 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The homeowners conceded, and from the pallid redundancy of white came various shades of blue in the primary bedroom, study, and front parlor, as well as the Vintage Vogue green of the kitchen. Charles Curkin, ELLE Decor, 13 July 2022 Upon clicking past the message, the sunny disposition of the website takes on a gloomy blue as the music distorts into a sinister boom. J. Kim Murphy, Variety, 2 July 2022 But as the landscape dips into the perpetual darkness of winter, their eyes turn a rich blue. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 28 June 2022 Always finish with a blue, as the robust quality of this cheese tends to affect other cheeses. Joseph V Micallef, Forbes, 9 June 2022 Crews raced to the fire lines this week as ash fell from a sky shifting at times from bright blue to a surreal orange hue. New York Times, 5 May 2022 Whittington shows Kardashian the car's features and presses a panel, which changes the lighting in the car and reveals different colors from an icy blue to a warmer yellow. Greta Bjornson,, 29 Mar. 2022 Unlike the previous-generation iPad Air, however, this model comes in a few new colors — like the metallic blue that my review unit is in. Maren Estrada, BGR, 21 Mar. 2022 At least three different shades of blue can be spotted, highlighted with a bright neon green. Rosemary Donahue, Allure, 20 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Republicans in Virginia’s 10th, 7th and 2nd districts — all seats targeted by the national GOP — are seeking to unseat the three Democratic congresswomen who flipped their districts to blue in 2018 with major help from suburban voters. Washington Post, 14 Mar. 2022 The home uniforms, which FAU wore versus the 49ers, have blue as the dominant color once again. Khobi Price,, 3 Oct. 2020 To ensure that John Cornyn, Chip Roy and the rest of the Texas Republicans stop putting us in danger, voter blue up and down the ballot in November. Taylor Goldenstein,, 26 Aug. 2020 There are signs that Texas, due to changing demographics, may be the next Electoral College giant to turn from red, if not to blue, then at least to purple. John A. Farrell, The New Republic, 16 Apr. 2020 So why won't blue shampoo cut it for keeping cool brunettes cool? Taylore Glynn, Marie Claire, 23 Jan. 2020 Ruscillo has studied the production of the ancient purple dye, including experimenting with it to make colors from pink to blue to almost black, though she isn't involved in the excavations on Chrysi. Fox News, 12 Dec. 2019 The pair were all smiles for the appearance at St. James’s Palace, where Kate blue a royal blue Issa dress that matched her sapphire engagement ring, which once belonged to William’s mother Princess Diana. Stephanie Petit,, 25 July 2019 Give classic orange and blue a dose of edge with abstract prints and a hit of dark à la Samantha Angelo. Laurel Benedum, ELLE Decor, 4 June 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'blue.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of blue


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1606, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for blue

Adjective, Noun, and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French blef, blew, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German blāo blue; akin to Latin flavus yellow

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Play with color with paint by number kits for adults selected by our Reviews team.

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Time Traveler for blue

Time Traveler

The first known use of blue was in the 13th century

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Dictionary Entries Near blue



blue acara

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Statistics for blue

Last Updated

30 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Blue.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for blue


\ ˈblü How to pronounce blue (audio) \

Kids Definition of blue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the color of the clear daytime sky
2 : blue clothing or cloth
out of the blue
: suddenly and unexpectedly

Other Words from blue

bluish adjective


bluer; bluest

Kids Definition of blue (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of the color of the sky : of the color blue blue ink
2 : sad sense 1 Why are you so blue?


\ ˈblü How to pronounce blue (audio) \
bluer; bluest

Medical Definition of blue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of the color blue



Medical Definition of blue (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a color whose hue is that of the clear sky or that of the portion of the color spectrum lying between green and violet
2 : a pigment or dye that colors blue — see prussian blue

More from Merriam-Webster on blue

Nglish: Translation of blue for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of blue for Arabic Speakers


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