Meaning of CLOUD in English
I. cloud 1 S3 W3 /klaʊd/ BrE AmE noun
[ Language: Old English ; Origin: clud 'rock, hill' ; because some clouds look like rocks ]
1 . IN THE SKY [uncountable and countable] a white or grey mass in the sky that forms from very small drops of water
heavy/thick/dense etc clouds
Dark clouds floated across the moon.
Heavy clouds had gathered over the summit of Mont Blanc.
Visibility was bad due to low cloud.
⇨ ↑ storm cloud , ↑ thundercloud
2 . IN THE AIR [countable] a mass of dust, smoke etc in the air, or a large number of insects flying together
cloud of dust/smoke/gas etc
A cloud of steam rose into the air.
clouds of mosquitoes buzzing around us
3 . PROBLEM [countable] something that makes you feel afraid, worried, unhappy etc
the cloud of economic recession
cloud on the horizon (=something that might spoil a happy situation)
The only cloud on the horizon was her mother’s illness.
Fears of renewed terrorist attacks cast a cloud over the event (=spoilt the happy situation) .
He returned to New York under a cloud of gloom and despair.
4 . under a cloud (of suspicion) informal if someone is under a cloud, people have a bad opinion of them because they think they have done something wrong:
He left the company under a cloud of suspicion.
5 . be on cloud nine informal to be very happy about something
6 . every cloud has a silver lining used to say that there is something good even in a situation that seems very sad or difficult
7 . be/live in cloud-cuckoo-land British English to think that a situation is much better than it really is, in a way that is slightly stupid
⇨ have your head in the clouds at ↑ head 1 (24)
• • •
■ ADJECTIVES/NOUN + cloud
▪ a black/grey cloud
Black clouds usually mean rain.
▪ a dark cloud (=a black or grey cloud)
A dark cloud covered the sun.
▪ a white cloud
There was a bright blue sky with a few white clouds.
▪ heavy/thick cloud ( also dense cloud formal )
By midday, heavy clouds had spread across the sky.
▪ low/high cloud
The weather was overcast, with heavy low clouds.
▪ storm clouds
Dark storm clouds were moving in from the Atlantic.
▪ rain clouds
The sky had been full of rain clouds for days.
▪ a bank/mass of cloud (=a large block of cloud)
A heavy bank of cloud was creeping across the sky.
▪ a layer of cloud
The moon was shining through a thin layer of cloud.
▪ wisps of cloud (=long thin pieces)
The plane flew through occasional wisps of cloud.
▪ a band of cloud (=a long narrow area)
Long narrow bands of cloud stretched across the valley.
▪ a blanket of cloud (=a thick layer)
In the morning, a blanket of cloud still covered the country.
▪ a veil of cloud (=a thin layer)
A thin veil of cloud hid the moon.
▪ clouds gather/form
The sky had darkened and clouds had gathered.
▪ clouds cover something
For days thick cloud had covered the whole sky.
▪ clouds clear/lift (=disappear)
At last the rain had stopped and the clouds had cleared.
▪ clouds part (=move away from each other)
Suddenly the clouds that covered the moon parted.
▪ clouds move/roll
A narrow band of cloud has been moving across the country.
▪ clouds drift/float (=move slowly)
A few clouds drifted across the top of the mountains.
▪ clouds race/scud (=move quickly)
A wind was blowing and soft clouds were scudding across the sky.
▪ clouds hang
Heavy grey clouds hung low in the sky.
■ cloud + NOUN
▪ cloud cover
The cloud cover should disappear by the afternoon.
▪ cloud formation (=the shape in which cloud forms)
There are many different types of cloud formation.
• • •
▪ cloud noun [uncountable and countable] a white or grey mass in the sky that forms from very small drops of water:
The storm was still a way off but black clouds were gathering.
Thick cloud obscured the top of the hill.
▪ fog noun [uncountable and countable] very thick cloud near the ground which is difficult to see through:
The cars crashed into each other in thick fog.
The fog had lifted (=disappeared) slightly.
▪ mist noun [uncountable and countable] light cloud near the ground that makes it difficult for you to see very far. Mist is usually not as thick as fog . You often get mist near areas of water or mountains:
The morning mist was lifting and the sun was coming up.
A grey mist hung over the water.
The hills were shrouded in mist (=surrounded by mist) .
▪ haze noun [singular, uncountable] smoke, dust, or mist in the air which is difficult to see through:
He saw the horses coming towards him through a haze of dust.
The road shimmered in the heat haze.
A pale blue haze hung over the far-off mountains.
▪ smog noun [uncountable and countable] dirty air that looks like a mixture of smoke and fog, caused by smoke from cars and factories in cities:
The city is covered in smog for much of the year.
A smog warning was issued for parts of Southern Oregon.
▪ thundercloud noun [countable] a large dark cloud that you see before or during a storm:
He watched the thunderclouds roll across the valley.
▪ vapour trail British English , vapor trail American English noun [countable] the white line that is left in the sky by a plane:
High overhead, a jet left its vapour trail across the blue sky.
II. cloud 2 BrE AmE verb
1 . [transitive] to make someone less able to think clearly or make sensible decisions
cloud sb’s judgement/mind/vision etc
Don’t let your personal feelings cloud your judgement.
Fear had clouded his vision.
2 . ( also cloud over ) [intransitive and transitive] if someone’s face or eyes cloud, or if something clouds them, they start to look angry, sad, or worried:
Ann’s eyes clouded with the pain.
Then suspicion clouded his face.
3 . [transitive usually passive] to make something less pleasant or more difficult than it should have been:
Her happiness was clouded by having to leave her son behind.
4 . cloud the issue/picture etc to make a subject or problem more difficult to understand or deal with, especially by introducing unnecessary ideas:
Uninformed judgements only cloud the issue.
5 . ( also cloud up ) [intransitive and transitive] if glass or a liquid clouds, or if something clouds it, it becomes less clear and more difficult to see through:
windows clouded up with steam
The water clouded and I could no longer see the river bed.
6 . [transitive] to cover something with clouds:
Thick mist clouded the mountain tops.
cloud over phrasal verb
1 . ( also cloud up American English ) if the sky clouds over, it becomes dark and full of black clouds
2 . if someone’s face or eyes cloud over, they start to look angry or sad:
His face clouded over in disappointment.
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. Longman - Словарь современного английского языка. 2012