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 cold (audio) \ adjective
coldly \ ˈkōl(d)-​lē How to pronounce cold (audio) \ adverb
coldness \ ˈkōl(d)-​nəs How to pronounce cold (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 The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines must be kept at cold temperatures until a few hours before they are used. Julie Washington, cleveland, "CVS and Walgreens wasted large number of vaccine doses; federal face mask requirements extended for public transportation: Coronavirus update for May 3, 2021," 3 May 2021 Whole body cryotherapy is the practice of using cold temperatures to promote natural healing and wellness. Carroll County Times, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Restore Therapy Spa in Westminster hosting cryotherapy challenge," 1 May 2021 With cold temperatures and COVID-19 at the start of the year, she's delayed her horse visits and book deliveries for warmer temperatures. Southern Living, "North Carolina Woman is Blending a Love of Horses and Books to Get Kids Reading," 30 Apr. 2021 When trees are exposed to extremely cold temperatures – like during the deadly freeze that swept Texas earlier this year – their vascular systems can become freeze-dried. Jay R. Jordan, Chron, "The Sapling Dead: How to spot zombie trees after the Texas freeze," 29 Apr. 2021 Thursday’s opening day for the mass vaccination site brought unseasonably cold temperatures, a few swirls of snowflakes and a steady stream of cars. James Whitlow, baltimoresun.com, "‘Did you get your vaccine?’ Amid pockets of resistance, Harford County battles high COVID rate," 25 Apr. 2021 Russia is also a bitcoin-mining center—there are big operations in Siberia, where cold temperatures help keep rig farms from overheating—as is Iran, where electricity is subsidized. Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, "Why Bitcoin Is Bad for the Environment," 22 Apr. 2021 Of course, the lead scientist responsible for the freaky fish eventually divulges that they were created as a military weapon and are uniquely able to withstand cold temperatures in an attempt to infiltrate North Vietnamese rivers. Brooke Knisley, Vulture, "9 Eco-Horror Movies That Will Remind You to Be Nicer to the Earth," 22 Apr. 2021 The cold temperatures can be particularly dangerous this late in April since metro Detroit saw spring weather a little early this year, the weather service reported. Minnah Arshad, Detroit Free Press, "Part of metro Detroit got 4 inches of snow as region braces for freezing temperatures," 21 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun By six, the sun had set, and the cold was sinking in. Caroline Lester, Harper's Magazine, "The Lightning Farm," 27 Apr. 2021 Another 500 people braved the bitter cold and waited along Route 1. Kevin Leonard, baltimoresun.com, "Laurel’s long-running St. Mark’s Emancipation Proclamation Celebration started in 1902, and more history bits and pieces," 23 Apr. 2021 The cold is expected to moderate and in its place, warm weather with severe storms is expected across the entire South for Friday and Saturday. Max Golembo, ABC News, "Severe storms to follow spring cold in South," 23 Apr. 2021 These invertebrate meals become harder to find during the cold of winter, which is why the owls commonly migrate south to Mexico. AZCentral.com, "Trail cameras reveal more than 100 wildlife species along Arizona's southern borderlands," 15 Apr. 2021 Open gyms have resumed at the school, allowing kids and adults to escape the cold to play basketball or volleyball. Becky Bohrer, Anchorage Daily News, "Some remote Alaska villages achieve high vaccination rates," 19 Apr. 2021 In order to know whether a machine like Ingenuity can endure on Mars and make repeat flights, the engineers have been keeping a close eye on how well its battery and insulation handle the cold. Max G. Levy, Wired, "NASA Lands Ingenuity, the First Ever Mars Helicopter," 19 Apr. 2021 WR Rashod Bateman, Minnesota — Who better to catch passes in the cold than Bateman, an outstanding route runner and a gift for Aaron Rodgers. Sam Farmer, Los Angeles Times, "Sam Farmer’s NFL mock draft 2.0: Predicting QB picks as easy as one, two, three," 19 Apr. 2021 A thousand years ago Greenland really was warmer than today and supported Norse farmers who grew crops such as barley, which cannot be grown there now because of the cold. Richard Lindzen, National Review, "Climate ‘Emergency’? Not So Fast," 16 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Though there was an array of floral waters, cold-pressed oils, and powder-to-clay masks spread before her, Mahtani was most drawn to a humble moss green bar soap. Zoe Ruffner, Vogue, "Alighieri’s Rosh Mahtani Swears by This Skin-Softening Botanical Soap," 21 Apr. 2021 Juwan Howard set up an open 3-point look for cold-shooting Franz Wagner, who missed most of everything, and Eli Brooks missed a put-back before UCLA was able to corral the rebound. Kristen Davis, cleveland, "UCLA Final Four gear: Where to buy shirts, hats | NCAA Tournament 2021," 31 Mar. 2021 Some of the cold-stunned sea turtles had other problems as well, including hook infections and injuries from boats, Knight said. Jamie Stengle, ajc, "About 4,300 cold-stunned turtles survived the Texas freeze," 25 Mar. 2021 It should be noted that the Jazz didn’t simply pick up Favors’ option on July 6, 2019, then cold-heartedly send him packing a day later. Eric Walden, The Salt Lake Tribune, "How Derrick Favors’ season in New Orleans paved the way for his return to the Utah Jazz," 19 Mar. 2021 The turtles, two Kemp's ridley and one green sea turtle, were rescued within the past year after being stranded as cold-stunned sea turtles. Eric Todisco, PEOPLE.com, "3 Sea Turtles Make a Happy Return to the Ocean After Rehab at Baltimore's National Aquarium," 15 Sep. 2020 In a heroic effort, volunteers had to rescue more than 4,000 cold-stunned sea turtles on South Padre Island. Alison Fox, Travel + Leisure, "American Airlines Customers Can Now Donate to the Red Cross to Help Winter Storm Victims in Texas — and Earn Miles in the Process," 19 Feb. 2021 There were 11,591 cold-stunned sea turtles reported along the Texas coast due to the recent freeze, according to the Sea Turtle Stranding and Salvage Network. Matt Watt, San Antonio Express-News, "Freeze hurts fisheries but not to dire degree," 4 Mar. 2021 Reports of dead fish and cold-stunned sea turtles began coming in as early as Valentine’s Day. Matt Williams, Dallas News, "How did Texas’ fisheries, wildlife and habitats hold up in winter storms? Early reports aren’t so encouraging," 26 Feb. 2021

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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Time Traveler for cold

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for cold

Last Updated

6 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cold.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cold. Accessed 13 May. 2021.

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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 cold (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)

Comments on cold

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