1

cold turkey

noun
|Updated on: 15 Jun 2018

Definition of cold turkey

1 : abrupt complete cessation of the use of an addictive drug; also : the symptoms experienced by a person undergoing withdrawal from a drug
2 : unrelieved blunt language or procedure
3 : a cold aloof person

cold-turkey

play \ˈkōld-ˈtər-kē\ transitive verb

Examples of cold turkey in a Sentence

  1. I tried lots of ways to stop smoking, even cold turkey.

  2. my new boss is a cold turkey and definitely not one for chitchat

First Known Use of cold turkey

1919

in the meaning defined at sense 1

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cold turkey Synonyms

Synonyms

cold fish, iceberg;

Near Antonyms

dear, sweetheart, sweetie;


2

cold turkey

adverb

Definition of cold turkey

: all at once : abruptly: such as
a : without a period of gradual adjustment, adaptation, or withdrawal
  • quit smoking cold turkey
b : without preparation
  • a new player who started the season cold turkey

Recent Examples of cold turkey from the Web

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

First Known Use of cold turkey

1941

in the meaning defined above

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COLD TURKEY Defined for English Language Learners

cold turkey

Definition of cold turkey for English Language Learners

  • : the act of stopping a bad habit (such as taking drugs) in a sudden and complete way


Medical Dictionary

cold turkey

noun cold tur·key \ -ˈtər-kē \

medical Definition of cold turkey

: abrupt complete cessation of the use of an addictive drug; also : the symptoms experienced by one undergoing withdrawal from a drug

cold-turkey

adverb or transitive verb


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to recoil in dread or terror

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