cold

adjective
\ ˈkōld How to pronounce cold (audio) \

Definition of cold

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : having or being a temperature that is uncomfortably low for humans it is cold outside today a cold drafty attic
b : having a relatively low temperature or one lower than normal or expected the bath water has gotten cold
c : not heated: such as
(1) of food : served without heating especially after initial cooking or processing cold cereal cold roast beef
(2) : served chilled or with ice a cold drink
(3) : involving processing without the use of heat cold working of steel
2a : marked by a lack of the warmth of normal human emotion, friendliness, or compassion a cold stare got a cold reception also : not moved to enthusiasm the movie leaves me cold
b : not colored or affected by personal feeling or bias : detached, indifferent cold chronicles recorded by an outsider— Andrew Sarris also : impersonal, objective cold facts cold reality
c : marked by sure familiarity : pat had her lines cold weeks before opening night
3 : conveying the impression of being cold: such as
a : depressing, gloomy cold gray skies
4a : marked by the loss of normal body heat cold hands especially : dead … she lay cold and still—she was gone … — Upton Sinclair
b : giving the appearance of being dead : unconscious passed out cold
5a : having lost freshness or vividness : stale dogs trying to pick up a cold scent
b : far off the mark : not close to finding or solving used especially in children's games
c : marked by poor or unlucky performance the team's shooting turned cold in the second half
d : not prepared or suitably warmed up The player's sub entered the game cold.
in cold blood
: with premeditation : deliberately was killed in cold blood

cold

noun

Definition of cold (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : bodily sensation produced by loss or lack of heat they died of the cold
2 : a condition of low temperature extremes of heat and cold especially : cold weather He waited outside for her in the bitter cold.
3 : a bodily disorder popularly associated with chilling specifically : common cold She came down with a cold.
out in the cold
: deprived of benefits given others the plan benefits management but leaves labor out in the cold

cold

adverb

Definition of cold (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : with utter finality : absolutely, completely turned down cold also : abruptly stopped them cold
2a : without introduction or advance notice walked in cold to apply for a job
b : without preparation or warm-up was asked to perform the solo cold

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Other Words from cold

Adjective

coldish \ ˈkōld-​ish How to pronounce coldish (audio) \ adjective
coldly \ ˈkōl(d)-​lē How to pronounce coldly (audio) \ adverb
coldness \ ˈkōl(d)-​nəs How to pronounce coldness (audio) \ noun

Examples of cold in a Sentence

Adjective

The water was too cold for swimming. The weather has been unusually cold this spring. a country with a cold climate It was a long, cold winter. It's cold outside, but the wind makes it feel even colder. It's bitterly cold out there! metal that is cold to the touch Are you cold? I could turn up the temperature if you'd like. a bowl of cold cereal He ate cold pizza for breakfast.

Noun

I mind cold more than heat. They died of exposure to cold. The cold really sets in around late November and doesn't let up until April. I stood there shivering in the cold. He waited outside for her in the bitter cold. Come in out of the cold. It's not the flu, it's just a cold.

Adverb

She was asked to perform the song cold.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

In similar years, precipitation was comparable, but not the cold temperatures. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Why a volcanic eruption caused a 'year without a summer' in 1816," 17 Sep. 2019 But ice needs a specific set of things, including cold temperatures, time, and snow. National Geographic, "Beneath the Ice: Talking Glaciers with M Jackson," 9 Sep. 2019 When making any type of frozen dessert, keep in mind that cold temperature will dull sweetness. Maria Zizka, Los Angeles Times, "Five or Fewer: Chill out with these summertime sweets," 30 Aug. 2019 Thanks to the cold temperature of the water, the lack of natural light, and the layers of silt covering many of the artifacts, the ship and its contents were in remarkably good condition. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Fresh images of HMS Terror shipwreck could clear up lingering mysteries," 30 Aug. 2019 Nearly half those who complained had issues related to sleep, overcrowding and confinement and cold temperatures. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Shelter’s registration forms give portrait of asylum seekers," 28 Aug. 2019 Nearly half those who complained had issues related to sleep, overcrowding and confinement and cold temperatures. Washington Post, "Shelter data pinpoints US destinations of asylum seekers," 28 Aug. 2019 While the first publication focused on the cold temperatures anticipated this winter, the Old Farmer's Almanac predicts that excessive snowfall will be the most noteworthy part of the season. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "The Old Farmer's Almanac Predicts 'No Fewer' Than 7 Big Snowstorms This Winter," 28 Aug. 2019 The coldest temperature of the week is expected to come Tuesday morning as the low reaches near 53 degrees, according to the weather service. Lucas Phillips, BostonGlobe.com, "Cooler weather is expected through midweek — but temperatures in the 80s are in the forecast," 25 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Gone is the intense heat of summer, but the bitter cold of winter remains at bay. courant.com, "Cooler temps for Friday and Saturday," 13 Sep. 2019 Moreover, unlike the cold, dry, very thin-aired conditions prevailing there currently, the early Mars was warm and wet, with a thick CO2 atmosphere, making it a near twin for the Earth at the time when life first appeared here. Robert Zubrin, National Review, "‘Tardigrades on the Moon Is Not Good’," 31 Aug. 2019 Archaeologists have to pack heavy and use durable high-altitude tents to stave off the cold. Ritoban Mukherjee, Quartz, "Climate change is bad for the planet, but groundbreaking for archaeology," 30 Aug. 2019 The second Alex goes to help Bryce up — saving him from freezing to death in the November cold — Bryce shows it’s not the world that’s keeping him from getting better. Ariana Romero, refinery29.com, "This Is Exactly Who Killed Bryce Walker & Why In 13 Reasons Why Season 3," 24 Aug. 2019 Snowmobiles regularly broke down in the unforgiving cold. Neil Shea, National Geographic, "A thawing Arctic is heating up a new Cold War," 21 Aug. 2019 Then, following a thrilling afternoon dogsled ride, the sled dogs lolled in the mild sunshine, enjoying the cold of the fresh snow against their fur. Candice Yacono, Orange County Register, "Where is paradise? Right near Missoula, Montana," 29 July 2019 Ozymandias saved the world and Dr. Manhattan left it just after blowing Rorschach to pieces in the bitter cold of Antarctica. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "New trailer for HBO’s Watchmen includes a nod to Rorschach’s most famous line," 20 July 2019 But season-ticket holders are left out in the cold on those deals, forced to buy an extra ticket to receive the bonus items. J.l. Kirven, Detroit Free Press, "As Detroit Tigers try to fill seats, season-ticket holders fume," 14 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

But her funniest, most off-the-wall appearance in the role was during a 2017 Christmas cold open. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, "Leslie Jones' most memorable Saturday Night Live sketches," 27 Aug. 2019 Consulting the Yellow Pages, he cold-called the store, and got the job because Holloway’s mother got a good feeling about him on the phone. Gavin Edwards, charlotteobserver, "Pianos, mules, guitar strings: A 106-year-old family business is bidding it all goodbye," 8 June 2018 This wasn’t a promotional gimmick as much as an indication of the cheapness of Finley and persistence of Baer, who cold-called the owner to get the job. Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle, "‘Hot Pants Day’ and four other Oakland A’s gimmicks from the 1970s," 26 Mar. 2018 But the Falcons went ice cold early in the second half, and Milwaukee Lutheran went on a 13-4 run that gave the Red Knights a 60-54 lead with 12 minutes to play. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brown Deer shores up piece of sixth conference title in high-scoring win over Milwaukee Lutheran," 16 Feb. 2018

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

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First Known Use of cold

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Adverb

1889, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cold

Adjective

Middle English, going back to Old English cald (Anglian), ceald (West Saxon), going back to Germanic *kalða- (whence Old Saxon cald "cold," Middle Dutch cout, Old High German kalt, Old Norse kaldr, Gothic kalds), verbal adjective from *kalan- "to be cold" (whence Old English calan "to be cold, to make cold," Old Norse kala "to freeze") going back to a dialectal Indo-European base *ǵel-, *ǵol-, whence also Latin gelū, gelus "frost, cold," gelāre "to freeze, chill"

Noun

Middle English, going back to Old English ceald, cald, noun derivative of ceald, cald cold entry 1 (or derivative from the Germanic base of these adjectives)

Adverb

derivative of cold entry 1

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Statistics for cold

Last Updated

11 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cold

The first known use of cold was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for cold

cold

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of cold

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: having a very low temperature
: having a feeling of low body heat
of food : not heated

cold

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cold (Entry 2 of 3)

: a cold condition
: cold weather
: a common illness that affects the nose, throat, and eyes and that usually causes coughing, sneezing, etc.

cold

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of cold (Entry 3 of 3)

: in a very clear, complete, and definite way
: in a sudden way
: without practicing or preparing before doing something

cold

adjective
\ ˈkōld How to pronounce cold (audio) \
colder; coldest

Kids Definition of cold

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : having a low temperature or one much below normal a cold day
2 : suffering from lack of warmth I feel cold.
3 : cooled after being cooked We ate cold chicken.
4 : served at a low temperature or with ice Have a cold drink.
5 : lacking warmth of feeling : unfriendly She's been cold to me ever since our disagreement.
in cold blood
: with planning beforehand

Other Words from cold

coldly adverb
coldness noun

cold

noun

Kids Definition of cold (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a condition of low temperature : cold weather I can't stand the cold.
2 : the bodily feeling produced by lack of warmth : chill He was shivering with cold.

cold

adjective
\ ˈkōld How to pronounce cold (audio) \

Medical Definition of cold

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : having or being a temperature that is noticeably lower than body temperature and especially that is uncomfortable for humans a cold drafty room
b : having a relatively low temperature or one that is lower than normal or expected the bath water has gotten cold
c : receptive to the sensation of coldness : stimulated by cold a cold spot is a typical receptor in higher vertebrates
2 : marked by the loss of normal body heat cold hands
3 : dead
4 : exhibiting little or no radioactivity

Other Words from cold

coldness \ ˈkōl(d)-​nəs How to pronounce coldness (audio) \ noun

cold

noun

Medical Definition of cold (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : bodily sensation produced by loss or lack of heat
2 : a bodily disorder popularly associated with chilling:
a in humans : common cold
b in domestic animals : coryza

Medical Definition of COLD (Entry 3 of 3)

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More from Merriam-Webster on cold

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cold

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cold

Spanish Central: Translation of cold

Nglish: Translation of cold for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cold for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about cold

Comments on cold

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