Meaning of COLD in English


I. ˈkōld adjective

( -er/-est )

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English cald, ceald; akin to Old High German kalt cold, Old Norse kaldr, Gothic kalds, Latin gelu frost, gelare to freeze, congeal


a. : having a temperature notably below an accustomed norm, often notably below that of the human body or below that compatible with human comfort : notably lacking in warmth : having a low temperature

quite cold weather

it was cold yesterday

the rain was very cold now, almost frigid, and they shuddered — Norman Mailer

a cold and drafty hallway

cold arctic seas

have trouble starting with a cold motor

— distinguished from cool

b. : likely to lose heat quickly : likely to feel cool

a cold metallic substance

c. : receptive to the sensation of coldness : stimulated by cold

a cold spot is the typical cold receptor in higher vertebrates


a. : naturally without heat — used in ancient and medieval sciences to describe one of the qualities of the four elements

b. of a sign of the zodiac : having a cold complexion


a. : marked by lack of warm feeling : without ardor, zeal, or sympathy : distant

he's a pretty cold one — Ernest Hemingway

the cold , correct, regular, narrow poetry of Pope — A.L.Kroeber

this novel leaves the reader cold

b. : free from emotion or passion, especially sexual passion : frigid , inhibited

one of the cold kisses that he disliked so much — Archibald Marshall

c. : lacking cordiality, heartiness, friendliness, or affability : unfriendly : forbiddingly reserved : aloof , chilling

his cold , mean, selfish policy toward those whom he liked to segregate and hate as his enemies — W.A.White

the court becomes a cold place for the self-exiled queen — H.O.Taylor

d. : lacking feeling : emotionless , detached , indifferent , apathetic , cold-blooded

the cold neutrality of an impartial judge — Edmund Burke

cold , sullen, unreliable, brusque, unconventional, grasping, a man of iron will — C.L.Jones

e. : feeling or showing no interest, excitement, or sympathy : unenthusiastic

the discouragement of playing to a cold audience

the mawkish appeal left him cold

to his astonishment, he finds the people of his village cold to this noble and time-honored sentiment — Arthur Knight

f. : marked by deliberate intent or plan : not shaped or influenced by passion or strong feeling : activated or executed deliberately

a cold calculated punishing punch in the mouth — John Steinbeck

that a goodly part of the illegal drug supply is grown and processed in China; that it is spread with cold deliberation to other countries — Meyer Berger

g. : unemotionally calculated or calculating : marked by analysis and calculation uninfluenced by warmer feelings : unfeeling

how cold economic considerations and calculations prevail in all matters of international importance — H.W.Van Loon

the cold argument and unhurried process of trial in the courts of law — W.C.Dickinson


a. : previously cooked but served or eaten cold

a cold collation

cold boiled ham

b. : not hot enough : heated insufficiently or permitted to cool

the soup was cold

c. : not heated

stored in a cold cellar

d. : made cold : cooled, iced

cold soft drinks

e. : unheated while being worked

drive rivets cold

a cold -bent iron pipe

cold -forged steel


a. : inducing discouragement : depressing , cheerless , dispiriting , gloomy

a cold correctness in the way he put his bicycle in its place that made her heart sink — D.H.Lawrence

the cold respectability of a Pharisee's dining room — W.L.Sullivan

b. : producing a sensation of cold : chilling

I hold a key in my hand and it is cold — Muriel Rukeyser

cold blank walls

c. of a color : cool ; especially : having a cool hue and low value


a. : dead

lay cold in his coffin — Margaret A. Barnes

b. : unconscious typically from a blow or shock or from complete intoxication : insensible

knocked out cold

pass out cold

c. : completely at one's mercy : without hope of escape : defenseless

you're as good as found guilty because they never crack down unless they have you cold — Polly Adler

d. : marked by complete knowledge or errorless familiarity : certain , sure

the actors had their lines cold a week before the opening night

e. slang : sure to be fulfilled — used of a contract in a card game


a. of a soil : retentive of moisture, often compact and clayey, and responding only slowly to atmospheric temperature changes

b. of a manure : decaying slowly with little evolution of heat

cold pig manure

8. : feeling cold : made uncomfortable by cold — usually used postpositively

the children came back in when they were cold

9. obsolete , of foods : bland , mild : not strong, hot, or pungent

cold plants

10. : lacking power to influence, incite, animate, inspire, impassion, or affect in other ways

the Roman copy is almost inevitably colder, less alive, less emotional, and (above all) less expressive than the Greek — Hunter Mead

a cold traffic of minds and ideas and, for all the melodrama, not a clash of living people — J.R.Newman

a. : faint : not strong ; usually : old and being obscured

dogs trying to follow the cold scent

: retaining only faint scents, traces, or clues

the trail had become cold

b. : stale , uninteresting ; often : having undergone loss of timeliness

the story is now too cold to be newsworthy

c. : old and showing lack of power to communicate

a stenographer trying to transcribe cold notes

d. : not illegal or involved in a crime : not suspect

trading the hot car for a cold one

e. : allowing little or no possibility of contact with radioactivity — used especially of area in a plant or laboratory; opposed to hot

11. : presented or regarded in a straightforward, blunt, or matter-of-fact way : not influenced or relieved by emotional presentation or persuasive appeal : impersonal

competing on a basis of sheer cold efficiency — T.W.Arnold

the cold facts of the case

presenting cold statistics


a. : far from finding, discovering, or solving

b. : marked by poor or unlucky performance

an erratic bowler, sometimes hot, sometimes cold

hot and cold periods even fall … upon writers — C.B.Davis

c. : not in operation : idle

a cold munitions plant in peace times

d. slang , of dice : not producing many passes or results that win for the shooter


a. : marked by lack of preparation, rehearsal, preliminary performance, preliminary exercise or operation, introduction, or knowledge and familiarity

instead of opening cold in New York, all the productions have had a week of preliminary performing in Hartford — Brooks Atkinson

they came here cold , years ago, not knowing many people — J.P.Marquand

a substitute entering the game cold

b. in radio & television : without music or embellishments

a program that comes on cold

cold drama

the salesman had to approach the prospective customer cold

cold selling

14. : certain to be as indicated : assured

a cold five thousand dollars

15. : lacking in thoroughbred blood

a cold cross

16. : designed for use in cutting cold metal

17. : living in or characteristic of a cold environment

the cold fauna of glacial epochs


a. : intense and barely controlled

a cold fury

a cold irritation

b. : checked short of sustained overt violence (as military action) but marked by deep antagonism and conducted with all available economic, political, or social means

a cold pogrom

cold revolution


a. : intended for use without being heated

a cold glue

b. : using or produced by cold type

cold composition

- in cold blood

II. noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English cald, from cald, adjective — more at cold


a. : a condition of low temperature : coldness

the cold was intense

b. : cold weather

2. : bodily sensation produced by loss or lack of heat : chill

they groan with pain and shudder with the cold — S.T.Coleridge

3. : a respiratory infection:

a. in man : common cold

to catch cold

he has a cold

b. in domestic animals : coryza b

4. : chill discouragement : a feeling of blended fear, crushing disappointment, shock, depression, or despair

- in the cold

- out in the cold

III. verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English colden, from (assumed) Old English caldian, cealdian, from cald cold — more at cold

intransitive verb

: to become cold

the nights were colding — Maristan Chapman

transitive verb

: to make cold

cold his blood with the thought of dying — John Masefield

IV. adverb

( -er/-est )

Etymology: cold (I)

1. : with utter finality : in a completely unmitigated way : totally , absolutely

he was stopped cold

be turned down cold

know the answers cold

2. : while cold or without the application of heat — used especially of metalworking processes

cold -hammer a bar of iron

cold -roll steel

cold -swage metal parts

V. adjective

: low in energy and thus having low velocity

cold neutrons

VI. noun

: a state or condition of having a secret identity, mission, or cover — used in the phrase in from the cold

a near-deadly slip … made the game too dangerous and the F.B.I. called him in from the cold — Ralph Blumenthal

also : a state of estrangement, isolation, or neglect

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.