… each ball containing 1.366 ounces of pure silver, would cost $204.90 compared with $5.29 at the white metal's pre-1967 price of 1.29 … William L. Silber
or less commonly White: of or relating to any of various population groups considered as having light pigmentation of the skin
The meaning of white as it relates to population groups has historically been fluid, with people of particular ancestries being excluded for a time before being included, and vice versa. The category has also often functioned as a grouping into which people who are not designated as belonging in some other category are placed. Specific parameters are, however, sometimes set, as in the U.S. 2020 Census, which stipulates that "the category of 'White' includes all individuals who identify with one or more nationalities or ethnic groups originating in Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa."
or less commonly White: of or relating to white people or their culture
books from the canon of white literature
dated, offensive: marked by upright fairness
That's mighty white of you
This use of white is sometimes used ironically.
He was wearing white sneakers.
He had a long, white beard.
Her lips were white with fear.
He turned white when he heard the news.
He came from a white middle-class background.
His mother is Hispanic and his father is white. Noun
the whites of his eyes
The cake recipe calls for four egg whites. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
If Mehmet Oz, Blake Masters, and Don Bolduc had won their Senate races, as far as the GOP elites are concerned, Trump could invite anti-Semites and white supremacists like Ye (Kanye West) and Nick Fuentes to Mar-a-Lago every weekend.
Michael Tomasky, The New Republic, 28 Nov. 2022 But white supremacists have adopted it as well, often creating racist versions of the hammer by incorporating hate symbols such as Hitler’s hakenkreuz.
Deepa Bharath, Anchorage Daily News, 27 Nov. 2022 Trump’s call for a ban on Muslim immigration as a candidate, his seeming defense of white supremacists after a violent protest in Charlottesville, Va., and the paucity of GOP voices willing to object.
Mark Pazniokas, Hartford Courant, 27 Nov. 2022 The Twitter account of the U.S. men's team displayed a banner with the squad's matches in the group stage, with the Iranian flag only bearing its green, white and red colors.
Jon Gambrell, ajc, 27 Nov. 2022 The Twitter account of the U.S. men's team displayed a banner with the squad's matches in the group stage, with the Iranian flag only bearing its green, white and red colors.CBS News, 27 Nov. 2022 Drag shows across the country have, for months, been targeted by far-right extremists including Proud Boys and white supremacists.
Will Carless, USA TODAY, 25 Nov. 2022 That England fans wear the red-and-white cross of St George, also the English national flag, is a long-lasting result of the popularity of the cult surrounding George as a military saint during the Crusades.
Patrick Smith, NBC News, 25 Nov. 2022 This box is highly customizable with options for 6 or 15 bottles monthly, every other month, or quarterly in red or white varietals or a mix of both.
Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, 24 Nov. 2022
The photographer captures the area in the 1990s in all its highs and lows, mostly in black-and-white.Los Angeles Times, 25 Nov. 2022 Growing up in a conservative evangelical community, I was taught that morality was black-and-white.
Carrie Mckean, The Atlantic, 23 Nov. 2022 Both trailers for the film have featured a Wakandan funeral procession with all involved wearing white.
David Betancourt, Washington Post, 10 Nov. 2022 Both trailers for the film have featured a Wakandan funeral procession with all involved wearing white.
David Betancourt, Anchorage Daily News, 10 Nov. 2022 Scott and a group of dancers wearing white and fur performed inside the enclosure, climbing over large rocks and snowdrifts.
Hilary Lewis, The Hollywood Reporter, 15 May 2022 The new parents celebrated Holi with their friends, including actor Jonathan Tucker, by wearing white and throwing colored powder bags at each other in a backyard with a beautiful panoramic view of Los Angeles.
Glenn Garner, PEOPLE.com, 19 Mar. 2022 His heroines were never all good—they’re not Dickens’s sainted angels wearing white—and his villains were never all bad.
Dawn Davis, Bon Appétit, 14 Feb. 2022 In the research world, though, the story hasn’t been nearly so black-and-white.WIRED, 16 Nov. 2022 See More
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'white.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Middle English whit, white, going back to Old English hwīt "white, bright, shining," going back to Germanic *hwīta- (whence also Old Frisian hwīt, hwītt, wīt, wit "white," Old Saxon hwīt "white, bright," Middle Dutch wit, witt "white," Middle Low German wit, witte, Old High German hwīz, wīz, Old Icelandic hvítr, Gothic ƕeits), probably going back to Indo-European *ḱu̯ei̯t-nó-, whence also, with zero-grade, Sanskrit śvítnaḥ "whitish," and without suffixal -n- Sanskrit áśvait "(it) brightened," śvitāná- "brightening," śvetáḥ "white, bright," Avestan spaēta-, Old Church Slavic světŭ "light, radiance," svěštǫ, světiti "to shine, give light," Lithuanian šviečiù, šviẽsti "to shine, shine a light (for)"; (sense 2c) from the stereotypical and racist association of good character with northern European descent; (sense 6) from the association of white with royalist and counter-revolutionary causes, perhaps originally from its use in the cockades and flags of the Bourbon dynasty in France and the Jacobites in Britain
Though this etymology for Germanic *hwīta- seems likely in broad outline, the details are problematic. The *-t- in the Indo-European etymon would lead one to expect a voiced or voiceless fricative in Germanic rather than a voiceless stop. The explanation for this lies in the assumption that the cluster *-tn- after the accent in the presumed pre-form *ḱu̯ei̯t-nó- produced a geminate t (Kluge's Law), which the individual Germanic languages have generally shortened after a long vowel (though this is arguably not the case for Old High German). The occasional tt spellings in Old Frisian, Middle Dutch and Middle Low German may be taken as traces of gemination. (E. Seebold, however, believes these forms are late and secondary, and points to the nominative neuter form hwitt in the Cotton Caligula manuscript of the Heliand—see Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache.) Their descendants in the modern languages in part also show a short vowel, giving rise to yet another assumption, that these forms go back to a zero-grade adjective *ḱu̯it-nó-. The older literature on *hwīta- simply accepts that its Indo-European predecessor was *ḱu̯ei̯d-, with -d- being a different root extension than the -t- evident in the Indo-Iranian and Balto-Slavic words. See discussion and references in R. Lühr, Expressivität und Lautgesetz im Germanischen (Heidelberg, 1988), pp. 263-64; and in G. Kroonen, Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Germanic (Brill, 2013), p. 267.
Middle English whit, white, going back to Old English hwīt, noun derivative of hwītwhite entry 1
Middle English whiten, going back to Old English hwītan, hwītian, derivative of hwītwhite entry 1
First Known Use
before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a
before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4a
before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above
The first known use of white was
before the 12th century