sanguine

adjective
san·​guine | \ ˈsaŋ-gwən How to pronounce sanguine (audio) \

Definition of sanguine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : marked by eager hopefulness : confidently optimistic In the month of August 1994, Democrats remained sanguine about their chances at the polls …— John B. Judis A lot of attention also is being devoted to the development of vaccines to prevent genital herpes, although not everyone is sanguine about the outcome.The Journal of the American Medical Association
2 : bloodred … the radiant heat from the cedar logs, whose sanguine colour made the silvered locks of his hair into a fantastic wreath of flames.— Elinor Wylie
3a : consisting of or relating to blood … some sanguine vessels are obstructed, and distended …— Theophilus Lobb
b : bloodthirsty, sanguinary … attacked by the sanguine … warriors of neighboring islands …— Ana Y. Ramos-Zayas
c : accompanied by, involving, or relating to bloodshed : bloody … from the numerous graves, including those by the barn, which our shells had destroyed; we realized what a sanguine battle it had been …— Frederick W. Wild
d of the complexion : ruddy She was all unnerved; her naturally sanguine complexion was pale …— Charlotte Brontë
4 : having blood as the predominating bodily humor — see humor entry 1 sense 2a An abundance of red blood was marked by a warm and sanguine temperament; whereas, an excess of yellow bile produced the choleric temperament …— Samuel Lytler Metcalfe also : having the bodily conformation and temperament held characteristic of such predominance and marked by sturdiness, healthy red complexion, and cheerfulness He conceived himself rather as a sanguine and strenuous man, a great fighter. — G. K. Chesterton

sanguine

noun
san·​guine | \ ˈsaŋ-gwən How to pronounce sanguine (audio) \

Definition of sanguine (Entry 2 of 2)

: a moderate to strong red

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Other Words from sanguine

Adjective

sanguinely adverb
sanguineness \ ˈsaŋ-​gwən-​nəs How to pronounce sanguineness (audio) \ noun
sanguinity \ saŋ-​ˈgwi-​nə-​tē How to pronounce sanguinity (audio) , san-​ \ noun

Did You Know?

Adjective

Sanguine has quite a few relatives in English. Sangfroid ("self-possession especially under strain") and sanguineous ("bloodthirsty") are consanguineous with sanguine. (Consanguineous, means "descended from the same ancestor.") The tie that binds these words is sanguis, the Latin word for blood. Exsanguination ("the draining or losing of blood"), sanguinary ("murderous" or "bloody"), and the rare sangsue ("leech") and sanguinolent ("tinged with blood") are also sanguis relatives. That's something you can raise a glass of sangaree or sangria ("a usually iced punch made of red wine, fruit juice, and soda water") to!

Examples of sanguine in a Sentence

Adjective

He has been strangely sanguine about this, blandly ignoring the mounting evidence that dissident elements in the police are stirring trouble … — Allister Sparks, Washington Post, 9–15 Mar. 1992 How could a man of his caliber be this sanguine about a war we had barely begun to fight? He gave me the McNamara look, eyes focusing boldly through rimless glasses. "Every quantitative measurement we have shows that we're winning this war," he said. — Neil Sheehan, A Bright Shining Lie, 1988 Yet if there were sanguine expectations of war profits and unlimited booty from the Spanish empire, … those hopes were dramatically confounded … — Simon Schama, The Embarrassment of Riches, 1988 He does not pretend to be sanguine about our prospects. History itself, he reminds us, provides few examples of cultures as debilitated as ours which were not destroyed by the very forces they set in motion. — Gertrude Himmelfarb, The New History and the Old, 1987 She has a sanguine disposition. He is sanguine about the company's future.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

That is a dramatic reversal from a year ago, when executives were sanguine about the risk of recession, ranking it their 19th concern overall out of 28 issues, below issues like outdated infrastructure, workforce diversity and income inequality. Lauren Weber, WSJ, "CEOs Say Recession Is Top Worry for 2019," 16 Jan. 2019 Private economists are a bit less sanguine, helping to explain their slightly lower projection for interest rates. Paul Kiernan, WSJ, "Economists Expect Fed to Continue Raising Rates Through 2019," 15 Nov. 2018 Why are markets so sanguine about a trade war that could affect hundreds of billions of dollars in international commerce? Matt Phillips, The Seattle Times, "As trade war escalates, stock markets shrug — here’s why," 18 Sep. 2018 The main reason traders are so sanguine is that the U.S. has been in a natural-gas glut for the past decade. Spencer Jakab, WSJ, "Don’t Get Complacent About Natural Gas," 1 Aug. 2018 Factory owners, meanwhile, seem sanguine about that possibility. Maya Singer, Vogue, "Until Western Brands Take a Stand, the Lives of Bangladeshi Garment Workers Are at Risk," 4 Dec. 2018 There were other measures, like the percentage of 25-54-year-olds with jobs, which told a less sanguine story and more closely matched the disappointing wage gains. Evan Horowitz, BostonGlobe.com, "Wage growth is anemic, and that’s all you really care about," 17 May 2018 Some analysts and investors were sanguine about Tesla’s decision to stay public. Tim Higgins, WSJ, "Tesla’s Challenges Are Back in Spotlight After Going-Private Spectacle Ends," 27 Aug. 2018 Sedona city attorney Robert Pickels, who defended the city’s ordinances, is sanguine, despite wrestling with the issue for years. Colin Lecher, The Verge, "How conservative ‘property rights’ groups are battling cites’ Airbnb rules," 14 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But not all involved with the legal defense are sanguine that Giuliani can succeed where others have failed. Gloria Borger, CNN, "Trump legal team brings fresh firepower to reset with Mueller," 20 Apr. 2018 Here, there are more than 90 options ranging from yuzu to orange sanguine, speculoos to fig. Kristen Bateman, Vogue, "Choux, Confitures, and Caviar: The Best Specialty Food Shops in Paris," 7 July 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sanguine.' 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 sanguine

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sanguine

Adjective and Noun

Middle English sanguin, from Anglo-French, from Latin sanguineus, from sanguin-, sanguis — see sanguinary

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Statistics for sanguine

Last Updated

29 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for sanguine

The first known use of sanguine was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for sanguine

sanguine

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of sanguine

formal : confident and hopeful

sanguine

adjective
san·​guine | \ ˈsaŋ-gwən How to pronounce sanguine (audio) \

Medical Definition of sanguine

1a : consisting of or relating to blood
b of the complexion : ruddy
2 : having blood as the predominating bodily humor also : having the bodily conformation and temperament held characteristic of such predominance and marked by sturdiness, high color, and cheerfulness

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More from Merriam-Webster on sanguine

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sanguine

Spanish Central: Translation of sanguine

Nglish: Translation of sanguine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about sanguine

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