san·​guin·​e·​ous | \ san-ˈgwi-nē-əs How to pronounce sanguineous (audio) , saŋ- \

Definition of sanguineous

2 : of, relating to, or involving bloodshed : bloodthirsty
3 : of, relating to, or containing blood

Keep scrolling for more

Did You Know?

Sanguineous isn't the only English adjective to come from "sanguis," the Latin word for "blood." "Sanguine," for one, has been with us since the 14th century. Nowadays, it usually means "confident" or "optimistic," but it can also mean "ruddy." (The "optimistic" sense stems from the medieval belief that a healthy red complexion denoted a courageous and hopeful temperament.) "Sanguineous" first appeared in the 16th century as a synonym of the "ruddy" sense of "sanguine," but now it's more often used in medical or scientific references to blood. It shares another sense - "bloodthirsty" or "involving bloodshed" - with "sanguinary," yet another "sanguis" descendant."

Examples of sanguineous in a Sentence

in the sanguineous culture of ancient Sparta, military glory was prized above all else

First Known Use of sanguineous

circa 1520, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sanguineous

Latin sanguineus

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about sanguineous

Time Traveler for sanguineous

Time Traveler

The first known use of sanguineous was circa 1520

See more words from the same year

Listen to Our Podcast about sanguineous

Statistics for sanguineous

Cite this Entry

“Sanguineous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sanguineous


san·​guin·​eous | \ saŋ-ˈgwin-ē-əs How to pronounce sanguineous (audio) , san- How to pronounce sanguineous (audio) \

Medical Definition of sanguineous

1 : of, relating to, or containing blood
2 : sanguine sense 2 a sanguineous temperament

More from Merriam-Webster on sanguineous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sanguineous

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sanguineous

Comments on sanguineous

What made you want to look up sanguineous? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!