Definition of cold in English:

cold

adjective

  • 1Of or at a low or relatively low temperature, especially when compared with the human body.

    ‘a freezing cold day’
    ‘it's cold outside’
    ‘a sharp, cold wind’
    • ‘At the same time, autumn is the right season to undertake exercises to build up one's body for the coming cold winter.’
    • ‘It clots very easily when the body's repeatedly exposed to cold temperatures.’
    • ‘Within weeks of the murder inquiry being launched, it emerged that her killer might have stored her body somewhere cold.’
    • ‘There is a risk of very windy conditions but overall it will not be too cold with temperatures around normal.’
    • ‘Wind, snow, rain, and cold temperatures are all factors that can steal your body heat.’
    • ‘The cold air hit her body with the force of a stone wall.’
    • ‘I'm begging someone, anyone pinch me, shake me, pour a bucket of cold water on my body.’
    • ‘The water was warm, almost scalding compared to the cold shock of the temperature that one day.’
    • ‘Christmas eve, there is a cold wind, the temperatures in the desert dip below freezing.’
    • ‘It's a cold climate with temperatures in the 20s in the winter and in the 50s in the summer.’
    • ‘It will be very cold by night with temperatures not expected to exceed two degrees.’
    • ‘No surprise there, given that it's cold outside and everybody needs a little human friction to get by.’
    • ‘Direct exposure to the cold air makes the body temperature drop too fast to adjust to the sharp difference.’
    • ‘After a bunch of cold days the temperatures shot up in the mid 40s and started melting things.’
    • ‘Not a minute too soon either as the air temperature is very cold.’
    • ‘This article refers to the differences that might occur on a cold winter's morning compared to a warm summer evening.’
    • ‘In cold climates the body achieves its constant temperature by a combination of heat production and heat conservation.’
    • ‘The problem has been made worse by standing flood water, freezing temperatures and a cold wind.’
    • ‘The wind outside was cold and wet, while the sky threatened to dump it's contents at any moment.’
    • ‘Salmon marine survival rates are known to be very poor in winters of particularly cold sea temperatures.’
    chilly, cool, freezing, icy, snowy, icy-cold, glacial, wintry, crisp, frosty, frigid, bitter, bitterly cold, biting, piercing, numbing, sharp, raw, polar, arctic, siberian
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1(of a person) feeling uncomfortably cold.
      ‘she was cold, and I put some more wood on the fire’
      • ‘I am very cold and tired and just wanted you guys to know I'm still alive.’
      • ‘Despite layers of thermal underwear and polar fleeces under my oilskins, I am so cold that I have lost all feeling in my right hand.’
      • ‘When they finally got there, John was very cold so Jamie built a fire for him.’
      • ‘For the first time in months I was cold, the gentle caress of the breeze put a smile on my face for the first time in days.’
      • ‘Rising gas prices are going to mean hungry and cold people all winter long.’
      • ‘And then I was really cold and I couldn't get up to make a hot-water bottle in case there was a scary thing in my kitchen.’
      • ‘The author can bear witness as to how uncomfortable it can be once you are cold to the core and well off the shore in a stiffer wind than was expected.’
      • ‘Her mother wore the jacket at her wedding - she was probably cold since it was October and she had just arrived from South Africa.’
      • ‘I was really cold and wet by the time we got to the cafe.’
      • ‘They'd rip the shirts off of their back for you if you were cold.’
      • ‘It was sunbathing weather in Catania, but now we are cold, even in sweaters and jackets.’
      • ‘When we are cold and uncomfortable, we tend to lose focus on the task at hand.’
      • ‘He misinterpreted that to mean she was still cold, and gently began to rub her bare arms with the palms of his hands.’
      • ‘As the flights lasted up to eighteen hours disembarking passengers were invariably cold and uncomfortable.’
      • ‘I quickly ran to him and wished him happy birthday and he in return hugged me and told me to sit in the blanket because I was very cold.’
      • ‘We all slept together in the bed because we were so cold.’
      • ‘At first the horse, called Beattie, could not walk because she was so cold, but after being wrapped in blankets she recovered.’
      • ‘It has to be done at the time, whatever the conditions and however tired, wet and cold people may be.’
      • ‘The finest tackle in the world won't catch you fish if you are so cold and miserable that concentration has dropped as low as the temperature.’
      • ‘She simply could not fathom that the heat in the entire building would not be turned back on just because she was cold.’
    2. 1.2(of food or drink) served or consumed without being heated or after cooling.
      ‘a cold drink’
      ‘serve hot or cold’
      • ‘Then in the evening we strolled over Tower Bridge and drank cold beers by the river at Butlers' Wharf.’
      • ‘A superb buffet was then served with a selection of cold food and good Lancashire hot-pot.’
      • ‘There is a display cabinet with wrapped sandwiches, salads (mackerel or ham) and cold puddings.’
      • ‘The second rule is only to serve cold soups when it is hot outside, so the first sip does not induce hypothermia.’
      • ‘Shortly after his release from captivity, he contemplates his pique at being served cold soup.’
      • ‘Less well known is ocrochka, a cold soup made of potatoes, egg, ham, green onion, dill and cucumber in a milky base.’
      • ‘I drank some more cold tea and goosebumps erupted all over my bare arms.’
      • ‘Wherever possible, ask that hot food is served piping hot and ensure that cold food has been kept cool.’
      • ‘You can choose all kinds of salads, hot and cold dishes and fruits, cakes and ice creams.’
      • ‘Serve with crusty buns topped with any cold meat you may have on hand.’
      • ‘Soft drinks and hot and cold food will also be available.’
      • ‘I've got a presentation to prepare and a sitting-room full of cold curry and empty drink cans.’
      • ‘Tea is almost always consumed hot, as people in Kazakhstan think that drinking cold beverages will make one sick.’
      • ‘Cream teas, ice creams and cold drinks will be served throughout the afternoon.’
      • ‘Melvin waved hello to her, as he sat at the table with Bill, eating cold pizza and drinking flat soda.’
      • ‘After the roast dinner on Sunday cold meat was served on Monday with mashed potato and vegetables.’
      • ‘Demand for cold convenience foods and drinks were hit by the wet conditions later in the month.’
      • ‘We used the response of many a Bulgarian to this comment, telling him that it is good for his skin to drink cold coffee.’
      • ‘Fears about smells and litter mean the only cafe on the beach would be limited to ice cream and cold food.’
      • ‘For a refreshing cold drink during summer boil half a cup of grated ginger and one cup of sugar in two cups of water.’
    3. 1.3Feeling or characterized by fear or horror.
      ‘a cold shiver of fear’
      • ‘Dutifully, we step on the correct train and go home to the overdraft statement, or the divorce petition, or the cold fear that our kid may be a junkie.’
      • ‘She felt rooted to the spot, her disappointment and fear a cold, hard knot in the pit of her stomach.’
      • ‘She was here for every child who saw their parent turn upon them, for every boy and girl who felt the cold grip of fear as a man called to them on a secluded footpath.’
      • ‘Its presence set a shiver of apprehension down the warrior's spine, and cold fear bubbling in his stomach.’
      • ‘The night before, for the first time since the Sars outbreak in Singapore, I felt cold fear.’
      • ‘Then the cold hard brutal horror had begun to hit home with him.’
      • ‘Then as quick as it had came, confusion transformed into cold fear as she turned to the stranger.’
      • ‘I felt my bowels twist and a cold arm of horror shoot up my spine and grab my neck.’
      • ‘Feeling the cold touch of fear grip his heart, the crook drank deeply from the scotch in his glass.’
      • ‘Usually, I had no fear of flying, but at that instant, the cold grip of fear clutched at my heart.’
      • ‘I've seen several pieces of footage of such monkey hunts and they all elicit the same cold gnawing fear in my gut.’
      • ‘Even a day later, just thinking about the interview gives me cold shivers down my spine.’
      • ‘Kassa looked into her and locker and ignored the cold feeling of fear that swept over her.’
      • ‘I saw again the white life I'd took instead of the black, and I went cold with a fear that I'd been wrong.’
      • ‘His fingers tightened around Xavier's hand and Xavier could feel the cold fear in his blood.’
      • ‘A cold fear rose in my throat as I pondered the possible origins of such evil.’
      • ‘I'm sure most GMs know the cold horror of watching from behind your screen as the group charge off after an irrelevant plot point.’
      • ‘Taking a step back, Joel felt a cold fear clutch at his chest as he forced himself to breathe.’
      • ‘I know that sense of dread that so many children will feel: that cold fear as Sunday draws to an end and Monday morning looms.’
      • ‘So far, however, it does not appear to have hurt the company or reduced shareholders to fits of cold shivers.’
    4. 1.4informal [as complement]Unconscious.
      ‘she was out cold’
      • ‘That gave him the opportunity to tackle Anthony down again, knocking him out cold.’
      • ‘Fortunately, Rooibush tea has an extreme effect on me, and can knock me out cold within 20 minutes.’
      • ‘It seems that one time a golf ball struck by Mr Hastings landed straight on some unfortunate man's head, knocking him out cold for a few minutes.’
      • ‘My votes will go to the candidates that can intellectually knock the others out cold.’
      • ‘He slides down the wood beam, out cold but still juddering.’
      • ‘Really, she'll be out cold for at least another couple of hours.’
      • ‘I must have been knocked out cold because I didn't even hear Anna talking to Blair when he came by.’
      • ‘They discovered their mum was out cold and unable to respond.’
      • ‘Usually this would have knocked a normal man out cold, but Paul was obviously not normal.’
      • ‘The only solution to that problem would be setting it back in place, and luckily, the boy was still out cold.’
      • ‘Molly is still out cold, but her brother is already awake and very talkative.’
      • ‘Four with respiratory diseases were on the same examination table, out cold from anesthesia.’
      • ‘However, the book knocked the assassin out cold so all they had to do was tie the man up and cart him off.’
      • ‘It was enough to send us into happiness, and to knock Spurs out cold.’
      • ‘I had to wait for the right moment to use a move I was sure would knock him out cold.’
      • ‘The man threw up an arm to ward him off, but Quin swept it aside and knocked him out cold with a single blow.’
      • ‘She came back a while ago, and now she's asleep, only I can't tell if she's asleep or out cold.’
      • ‘The painkillers had knocked her out cold and she lay in a deep, unbroken sleep.’
      • ‘The poor sap never even knew what hit him, since the blow knocked him out cold.’
      • ‘Then they turned to see that David was still out cold but the other two were looking confused as to where they were.’
    5. 1.5Dead.
      ‘lying cold and stiff in a coffin’
      • ‘Neither of us said a word as we watched the bright flame devour the cold, stiff copse of our dead son.’
  • 2Lacking affection or warmth of feeling; unemotional.

    ‘how cold and calculating he was’
    ‘her cold black eyes’
    • ‘People falsely assume that being dispassionate means being cold or indifferent.’
    • ‘Does she think we are cold, mean people because we practice Western-based medicine?’
    • ‘Even when she got them to talk to her, she had found that they were cold and harsh.’
    • ‘If you don't love this yarn there is a cold dead place where your heart should be and I pity you.’
    • ‘Some people take this to mean that she's cold and hard but I know better.’
    • ‘It is intoxicating, a potentially cold and academic work warmed by the power and skill of the actors, notably Valk.’
    • ‘At dinner, Kestril was cold and withdrawn, as if he faced a trial the next day.’
    • ‘She could see cold calculation in his eyes, not love or affection or concern.’
    • ‘It may sound a cold and calculating approach to a sale and I suppose it is, in a way.’
    • ‘Anyway, the charm was meant to bring true happiness and I'm sure a gloomy cold person like Ian would need some of that.’
    • ‘Now I realized that it was his cold anger that I feared, and not his quick temper.’
    • ‘While being a rather cold and calculating man on the whole, Maddock had a soft spot for children.’
    • ‘People may say we are cold, but what is wrong with being less demonstrative?’
    • ‘Maclean has always been a maverick, described more than once as cold and unfeeling.’
    • ‘Despite her terrible physical condition at the moment, the tone was so unemotionally cold.’
    • ‘He was taken away from his mother by Mimi and brought up in a cold, austere home with little affection or comfort.’
    • ‘She checked on the students regularly, always in her same formal cold manner.’
    • ‘Neither was there a hint of fear in Izumi's cold gray eyes, nor was there a gleam in Tenshi's.’
    • ‘Did you know that as well as being cold and unemotional, we are also polite, traditional and reserved?’
    • ‘She realized that he had warmed up to her a little in the past four hours, but at the beginning he was cold and hard to reach.’
    unfriendly, cool, inhospitable, unwelcoming, unsympathetic, forbidding, stony, frigid, frosty, glacial, lukewarm, haughty, supercilious, disdainful, aloof, distant, remote, indifferent, reserved, withdrawn, uncommunicative, unresponsive, unfeeling, unemotional, dispassionate, passionless, wooden, impersonal, formal, stiff, austere
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1Not affected by emotion; objective.
      ‘cold statistics’
      • ‘Their victory had been a triumph of cold logic over raw emotion.’
      • ‘Spare a thought for the machinations of the global economy and the cold statistics we hear and read so much.’
      • ‘On one hand, the seekers must be cold, impersonal, testing each theory mercilessly.’
      • ‘What you need is a dose of cold reality, followed by a couple of weeks living on an inner city council estate.’
      • ‘On the one hand it was extorted by the terrible price of the Warsaw Uprising, while on the other by a cold look at the horrors of war.’
      • ‘Statistics can be used to say anything, but always appear relentless and objective and cold.’
    2. 2.2Sexually unresponsive; frigid.
      ‘Elise was cold and barren’
      • ‘Those with a flat, narrow mount of Venus girdled by the Life Line are cold and unresponsive.’
      • ‘Sexual or cold, scheming or honest, Huston seems as driven to triumph as Lily is.’
    3. 2.3Depressing or dispiriting; not suggestive of warmth.
      ‘a cold light streamed through the window’
      • ‘Thus, when one side was bathed in light and warmth, the other would be a cold, dismal place shrouded in darkness.’
      • ‘Balthazar said, motioning for them to follow him through the cold, sterile airport.’
      • ‘It's a cold and clinical design that has none of the warmth and charm of its predecessor.’
      • ‘Suddenly the room felt like a hospital room again, cold, silent and impersonal.’
      • ‘Joel Shapiro is best known for humanizing the cold, impersonal forms of Minimalism.’
      • ‘London's image to many is cold, wealthy and impersonal, but its real history is of revolt and subversion.’
      • ‘I would much rather that than the cold impersonality we had going on right now.’
      • ‘He then walks out of the antiseptic and cold room, closing the door behind him.’
      • ‘The old resorts are seen as melancholy places where the skies are perpetually cloudy and the beaches cold and windswept.’
    4. 2.4(of a colour) containing pale blue or grey.
      • ‘The only notable difference was the fact that this girl had hazel eyes while the inquisitor girl had cold blue.’
      • ‘His eyes were a cold shade of blue, something that made you want to pull your jacket tighter to yourself.’
      • ‘Her black hair, tall frame and dark, cold blue eyes, and everything clicked.’
      • ‘They seemed to almost cloud over before the whites of his eyes flashed a cold blue.’
      • ‘His face was flawless, oddly familiar but never the less flawless, his eyes a clear, if not cold, blue.’
      • ‘Grey is the cold neutral colour; many languages identify it with blue or green.’
      • ‘Sara's ears had already begun to point and her eyes were glowing a cold blue.’
      • ‘I recognized the pale blond hair and cold blue eyes as those of Ashton James.’
      • ‘A few seconds later, the light died and they saw Mark standing still, his eyes blazed a cold blue.’
      • ‘As for the cold colour palette, a pink blouse matched with a grey knee-length skirt will show your authority.’
      • ‘In fact the only thing he knew for certain at this point was that the floor was grey, and a cold grey at that.’
      • ‘They were an icy blue, a blue so cold and intense that Erin was certain that he could see through her.’
      • ‘His eyes were a dark, cold blue, but it didn't seem to darken his appearance at all.’
      • ‘The snow seemed amazingly white against the cold grey of an Ontario winter sky.’
      • ‘The stranger turns around and offers me a hand up, cold blue eyes meeting mine.’
      • ‘Super-important sci-fi movies always show the future as slate gray and cold blue.’
      • ‘King Sila was a hard, stern man with cold blue eyes and dark hair, flecked with grey.’
      • ‘Moments later the craft was in the air and the planet below them was shining with streaks of bright red and cold blue.’
      • ‘His eyes opened, revealing cold blue orbs, sparkling with an inner light.’
      • ‘Some people think blue is a cold colour, but it doesn't have to be.’
  • 3(of the scent or trail of a hunted person or animal) no longer fresh and easy to follow.

    ‘the trail went cold’
    • ‘The trail has long gone cold, but Ames's mother, Shanika, still clings to the hope that he is still alive.’
    • ‘However, following this early breakthrough the trail went cold.’
    • ‘Some later reports placed him in Waziristan, Pakistan, but thereafter the trail has gone cold.’
    • ‘Most of the abductees never return and the trail grows cold.’
    • ‘Last night officers insisted the trail had not gone cold.’
    • ‘The trail's gone cold and we haven't heard anything in about two months.’
    • ‘They tracked down other train passengers who said she arrived at Delhi but there the trail runs cold.’
    • ‘Police sources say the trail then went cold, but Noye was later to return to southern Spain until his arrest in 1998.’
    • ‘The trail went cold for more than two decades - then the police had an astounding piece of luck.’
    • ‘The trail has to be cold by now, too much time has gone by and we don't know if he's changed his look again.’
    • ‘The panther smiled; it had been a long stern chase, with several trails gone cold.’
    • ‘The consumer tries to cancel the booking, but then the trail goes cold.’
    1. 3.1[predicative](in children's games) far from finding or guessing what is sought.
  • 4[as complement] Without preparation or rehearsal.

    ‘they went into the test cold’
    • ‘But it's still notable he was able to step in cold and run the offense so efficiently.’
    • ‘Manufacturers had difficulty ramping up to meet the Army's needs from a cold industrial base.’
    • ‘When he's warmed up at the start of a game instead of coming in cold off the bench, he is in less danger of injury.’
    unprepared, unready, inattentive, unwary, unwatchful, with one's defences down, by surprise, unsuspecting
    View synonyms
    1. 4.1informal At one's mercy.
      ‘they had him cold’

noun

  • 1[mass noun] A low temperature; cold weather; a cold environment.

    ‘my teeth chattered with the cold’
    ‘they nearly died of cold’
    • ‘Here she faced unimaginable cold, wild animals, near-starvation and avalanches.’
    • ‘This cold is deadly, and if we try to seek shelter in the wild tonight, I doubt if we will survive.’
    • ‘Approaching the cub, Erik could see that it was shivering violently from the cold and from fear of him.’
    • ‘The cold of night is sharpened by the disappearance of the surface winds.’
    • ‘The cold against my hot skin felt nice until I looked up into the mirror and saw someone that was not myself.’
    • ‘But now they could die of starvation or cold as temperatures drop to freezing at night.’
    • ‘Lucas said that he particularly likes the Tasmanian weather, especially the rain and the cold.’
    • ‘The cold of the water was a shock, but it wore off quickly when he swam around a bit.’
    • ‘Bulbs have evolved to survive in harsh climates, to withstand winter cold, or summer drought, or both.’
    • ‘The cold of winter dominated their life there as they had over 150 inches of snow in each of those winters.’
    • ‘I walked back to the bedroom, shivering, partly because of the cold but mostly, fear.’
    • ‘The cold of the autumn rain made her very bones ache; worry for her brother grew into real fear.’
    • ‘The cold in our bones couldn't thaw until the sun climbed over the peaks.’
    • ‘Rescue officials were on high alert yesterday, with the cold quickly turning fresh snow into sheets of ice.’
    • ‘The cold may make football difficult to cover but other sports have their own problems.’
    • ‘The onset of October brought about new fears of cold, of hunger and of no return.’
    • ‘These roses can often grow back from their roots if their tops die from winter cold.’
    • ‘Weather is usually seasonal varying from extreme cold to temperate.’
    • ‘This evening neither one of them was in the least inclined to brave the cold.’
    • ‘A higher proportion of the population die from the cold in winter in Britain than in icy Finland or Russia.’
  • 2A common infection in which the mucous membrane of the nose and throat becomes inflamed, typically causing running at the nose, sneezing, and a sore throat.

    ‘Suzie's got a cold’
    ‘a bad cold’
    [as modifier] ‘a cold remedy’
    • ‘You can reduce your risk of chronic sinusitis by carefully treating allergies and colds.’
    • ‘My cold seemed to be a bit worse that day, but as tired as I was, I had a really tough time sleeping that night.’
    • ‘I was on the fag end of an extended cold, unshaven, lacking decent sleep and possibly a little dehydrated.’
    • ‘Three-times major winner Ernie Els, who has been fighting a cold all week, was level for the day and for the tournament with one hole to play.’
    • ‘Edward was suffering from a cold, but you would never guess his discomfort.’
    • ‘Many everyday illnesses like colds and sore throats can be easily treated at home without visiting a doctor.’
    • ‘The viruses that cause acute bronchitis are the same ones that often cause colds.’
    • ‘Minor illnesses such as colds and flu were the most common cause of sickness absence but most employers said stress was on the increase.’
    • ‘Common colds spread through nasal droplets being inhaled and by hand to face contact.’
    • ‘Well, colds generally last a week, while allergies can last an entire season or longer.’
    • ‘And if workers have colds or sore throats, they should also be excused from phone work so as not to damage their voices.’
    • ‘Chinese medicine offers a variety of treatments for colds and chest infections.’
    • ‘It seems to boost the immune system, lower the frequency of colds and other infections.’
    • ‘Both colds and flu start with a runny nose, tickly throat, fever and aches.’
    • ‘People with high levels of stress are also more prone to develop colds and other minor illnesses.’
    • ‘Dutch research published last year showed that cutting back on food helps the body fight viral infections such as colds and flu.’
    • ‘Of course, you don't have to be in a high-risk category to be struck by colds or the flu.’
    • ‘Typically influenza is characterized by high fever while colds are without fever.’
    • ‘Most coughs and sore throats and all colds are viral infections.’
    • ‘If she gets a cold she coughs for two days and it stops after this whether we give her medicine or not.’
    cold, dose of flu, dose of influenza, respiratory infection, viral infection, virus
    View synonyms

adverb

North american
informal
  • Completely; entirely.

    ‘we stopped cold behind a turn in the staircase’
    • ‘The mud gets so thick and sticky that the clumps in my V-brakes stop my wheels cold.’
    • ‘There are blog sites and there are blog sites, but for us it seems that the Blast stopped the Comments cold.’
    • ‘When Dallas took away Barber in the second half last Sunday, the offense was stopped cold.’
    • ‘Trent stopped cold and very slowly turned around, his eyes throwing flames at David.’
    by surprise, unexpectedly, without warning, suddenly, abruptly, unprepared, off-guard, cold
    View synonyms

Phrases

  • (as) cold as ice (or stone or the grave etc.)

    • Very cold.

      ‘her hand was as cold as ice’
      • ‘Buck looked at Dr. Rake and Philip whose faces were as cold as stone.’
      • ‘I absolutely hated that school,’ Ian said with a voice as cold as ice.’
      • ‘He was as cold as stone, no true emotion lay behind his eyes.’
      • ‘His eyes, that had once been so warm, were now as cold as ice.’
      • ‘‘They're dead,’ he said in a voice as cold as ice.’
      • ‘‘Not a word, Nathaniel,’ she commanded, her words as cold as ice.’
      • ‘I glared up at his face, which was like usual, as cold as stone.’
      • ‘He could see why Sarah wouldn't like him; he was as cold as stone.’
      • ‘For example, a person may complain of feeling as if they have a constant lump in the throat, feeling as if they must sigh all the time, feeling inappropriate anger, or that their lower body is as cold as ice, or that they are anxious all the time.’
      • ‘June 19, 2006 - It looks like a rainbow that's been set on fire, but this phenomenon is as cold as ice.’
  • catch a cold

    • 1Become infected with a cold.

      • ‘Every time he catches a cold, Ms. Rao does too and he gets blamed.’
      • ‘They may have caught a cold or have a stomach ache or a fever.’
      • ‘If your child touches his or her mouth or nose after touching skin or some other surface that's been contaminated by one of the rhinoviruses that causes colds, your child may catch a cold.’
      • ‘Michael caught a cold so he stayed away for the mainstream events, so did Val.’
      • ‘He could enjoy the rain and was never worried about catching a cold when wet.’
      • ‘Also, his lungs became infected every time he caught a cold.’
      • ‘I have no plans for Canada Day and I might not be doing absolutely anything, because I am feeling pretty ill right now, I think I caught a cold and my throat is swollen.’
      • ‘On her 36th birthday, a Friday, she appeared at a Muscular Dystrophy benefit at Dodger Stadium and caught a cold.’
      • ‘However, en route to Washington to offer his services in the War of 1812, he caught a cold that proved fatal.’
      • ‘Then I can go home and rest, which is a good thing, as I think I've caught a cold or something.’
      1. 1.1Encounter difficulties.
        ‘the investors who have put up around $30 million could catch a cold’
        • ‘Even the Mail's City pages get in on the act, with a piece on ‘Why the markets catch a cold after a Labour victory’.’
        • ‘Eyes will be focused even more sharply on Hornby should the economy get caught out in the rain, in which case the bank might catch a cold.’
        • ‘‘When Wall Street sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold.’’
        • ‘But Maso also believes that his side could catch a cold in Rome today.’
        • ‘Elsewhere though, rival boutique chain Pilot Clothing has called in administrators after catching a cold this winter.’
        • ‘Unless the government is prepared to act and act soon, one of Scotland's biggest industries could soon be catching a cold.’
        • ‘It remains true that when the US catches a cold the rest of the world sneezes.’
        • ‘The US economy is teetering between recession and growth, and if it sneezes we all catch a cold.’
        • ‘That worked fine as long as prices held steady or even dropped but meant they could catch a cold if prices rose above expectations.’
        • ‘When it comes to the Internet, when the US sneezes, the rest of us catch a cold.’
  • cold comfort

    • Poor or inadequate consolation.

      ‘another drop in the inflation rate was cold comfort for the 2.74 million jobless’
      • ‘It is cold comfort to these fans that the NRL has promised to ‘review’ the finals allocation system before next season.’
      • ‘And after going down 1-0 in the most crucial series outside the World Cup, that was pretty cold comfort for Macqueen's men.’
      • ‘But that will be cold comfort to the millions of children who have been hit hard by these arbitrary policies, shamelessly justified in the name of school safety.’
      • ‘Orwell's efforts brought him little but calumny in his lifetime; posthumous vindication, even on such a grand scale, seems rather cold comfort.’
      • ‘But that was cold comfort for the former Vermont governor, whose once promising campaign unravelled further when the head of a major union withdrew his support.’
      • ‘There was cold comfort for those left behind, forecasters predicting a distinctly wet festive period and motoring organisations warning of jams on the roads.’
      • ‘These statistics are nonetheless cold comfort to friends and neighbors who have lost their jobs to overseas labor markets.’
      • ‘Problems such as the lack of car-parking were expected and are being addressed, though this is cold comfort to those forced to park off-site until next January.’
      • ‘Despite recent trends pointing to the rate of the price growth moderating, today's figures offer cold comfort to thousands of homeseekers.’
      • ‘The strong words will come as cold comfort to the Prison Officers' Association and its 3,200 members.’
  • cold feet

    • Loss of nerve or confidence.

      ‘after arranging to meet I got cold feet and phoned her saying I was busy’
      • ‘They believed the hype about the cost and got cold feet.’
      • ‘Apparently, one - or possibly more - of the investors may have gotten cold feet.’
      • ‘But when it came time to ask her dad if I could marry her, I got cold feet.’
      • ‘The Rochdale cabaret singer feared his Norwegian bride had got cold feet and decided to return to her homeland without him.’
      • ‘Hels's flat sale has fallen through - the purchaser was intending to buy-to-let and has got cold feet over the interest rates.’
      • ‘The central government has developed cold feet on the promised legislation to regulate fee and admissions in professional colleges.’
      • ‘It quickly got cold feet after its auditors took a close look at the books.’
      • ‘TWO ponies stolen from a field at Semley were reunited with their owner on Friday night, after thieves got cold feet and decided to abandon them.’
      • ‘I consider fleeing, but this is no time to get cold feet.’
      • ‘Other investors, financiers and shareholders have also got cold feet.’
      hesitate, falter, delay, drag one's feet, stall, think twice, change one's mind, waver, oscillate, fluctuate, vacillate, be undecided, be indecisive, be irresolute, see-saw, yo-yo
      haver, hum and haw
      sit on the fence, dilly-dally, shilly-shally, pussyfoot around, blow hot and cold
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  • cold one

    • informal A glass, bottle, or can of chilled beer.

      ‘it's time to crack open another cold one’
      • ‘Once ensconced with a cold one in the garden of the hotel, we got down to things regionally architectural.’
      • ‘They'd rather be knocking back a few cold ones in the back of a pickup.’
      • ‘It would have felt nice to slug back a cold one, but after her night at the bars she was being careful about alcohol.’
      • ‘You've had a great workout, why not sit back with a cold one in our cigar bar.’
      • ‘If you've got a couple cold ones in the fridge and a good wisecracking friend at your side, this is a movie for you.’
      • ‘A bell sounded to indicate when to crack open another cold one.’
      • ‘You're allowed to freely knock back the cold ones, soak your legs in the water, and take in the sounds coming in from the stages in the distance.’
      • ‘Kick back and crack open a cold one.’
      • ‘Any day that ends with, "I can't wait to have a cold one when I get home," counts as one of those days.’
      • ‘Crack a cold one, sit back comfortably, and let's get on with it.’
      • ‘We had thrown back a few cold ones.’
  • the cold shoulder

    • A show of intentional unfriendliness; rejection.

      ‘the new England manager gave him the cold shoulder’
      • ‘‘I felt guilty, as if I had given the cold shoulder to a good friend,’ he said.’
      • ‘Many young people are giving the cold shoulder to politicians who try to interest them in voting, says a new report.’
      • ‘They seem to be giving me the cold shoulder, and after all the work I put into this I don't want to just give up.’
      • ‘Everyday, one comes across instances in which the public give the cold shoulder to victims of violence.’
      • ‘If some paparazzi don't chill, they're going to get the cold shoulder from a best selling tabloid.’
      • ‘She didn't blame him directly, but gave him the cold shoulder for a few days.’
      • ‘This is great for me, because so far, I have apologised to Louise, and made friendly overtures, but she has given me the cold shoulder, and now Andrea is not speaking to me.’
      • ‘There are various music technology workshops run in and around the city by Future Prospects, but there is nowhere for these new skills to be used, so young people are given the cold shoulder.’
      • ‘After receiving the cold shoulder from the club, Scott has been forced to travel 25 miles on winter nights to attend the Edzell club, which welcomes female members.’
      • ‘So, after getting the cold shoulder from everyone this morning, for invading their space last night, I walked up to the cafe by myself.’
      snub, ignore, slight, spurn, shun, disdain, look right through, look past, turn one's back on, cold-shoulder, freeze out, steer clear of
      send to coventry
      give someone the brush-off, cut, cut dead, knock back, give someone the go-by
      blank
      View synonyms
  • cold-shoulder someone

    • Reject or be deliberately unfriendly to someone.

      ‘she was cold-shouldered by Boston society as a pushy outsider’
      • ‘In the hour-long documentary, he sets out to identify these character traits among a selection of swells most of whom, it must be said, cold-shoulder him ruthlessly.’
      • ‘The academic establishment tended to cold-shoulder him and the leaders of such a group as the Socialist Labour League derided him as a scholastic and refused to listen to suggestions which he based on his reading of Trotsky's work.’
      • ‘Former associates cold-shoulder me, those who could have taken me or left me emerge as enemies, and soon I stand alone, without a friend in the world, not even myself.’
      • ‘The main problem for Daihatsu - and other established micro-car-makers - is that Australians now tend to cold-shoulder them for more expensive brands offering a richer driving experience.’
      • ‘They won't cold-shoulder you like those who are still deluded enough to think they running the show.’
      • ‘The son does not try to excuse his father: ‘one can feel sorry for him, one can hate him, and one can totally cold-shoulder him.’’
      • ‘The platoon cold-shoulder him, and when he makes them some tea and biscuits, none of them accept.’
      • ‘As early as it was, I was ready to cold-shoulder him, but this guy was smooth.’
      • ‘Do we disengage completely from them, blacklist and cold-shoulder them so that they are left outside the international community, or do we engage with them?’
      • ‘He actually did this in FRONT of me once, thus clearing up in my mind why I was getting cold-shouldered by people who had, to the best of my knowledge, no reason to cold-shoulder me.’
  • cold steel

    • Weapons such as swords or knives collectively.

      ‘I say to you, give lawbreakers cold steel!’
      • ‘In the old days a man would have sent a gun boat, shown them the glint of cold steel, perhaps blown a few from the mouth of a cannon as an example to the rest.’
      • ‘Yet to Muscat's credit, though he plays by the sword he accepts being put to the cold steel when it is wielded by those publicly lambasting him.’
      • ‘Hitherto the tribesmen had been armed with matchlocks, daggers, and swords and had relied especially on the sudden charge from ambush and on cold steel.’
      • ‘There's only one language that these animals understand, and that is cold steel.’
      • ‘Swords clashed, cold steel shining in the candlelight.’
      • ‘Then, he heard the hiss of cold steel as the gatekeeper drew its katana.’
      • ‘Or does the thought of real cold steel in the belt of that twitchy fellow over by the reference books chill the life out of the adage?’
      • ‘So much for rhetoric, always preferred by politicians and other hail fellow well met charmers to the cold steel of logic.’
      • ‘Instead, the Scots flanked their static English foe and fell on them with cold steel.’
      • ‘There'll be cold steel for the crowd, no quarter and the amphitheatre will end up looking like a slaughterhouse.’
  • in cold blood

    • Without feeling or mercy; ruthlessly.

      ‘the government forces killed them in cold blood’
  • in the cold light of day

    • When one has had time to consider a situation objectively.

      ‘in the cold light of day it all seemed so ridiculous’
      • ‘I hope the fans, in the cold light of day, will look at it and have belief in the club.’
      • ‘She is never, ever going to forget what she did and does not, herself, understand in the cold light of day how it happened.’
      • ‘Inevitably we then receive calls from people who, in the cold light of day, begin to realise that they've made a mistake.’
      • ‘I'm very disappointed in the outcome (of the final) and, in the cold light of day, it feels even worse, but we have to get over it.’
      • ‘We'll sit down in the cold light of day, understand the facts, discuss it with the player and decide what we want to do.’
      • ‘You have got to sit down and look at things in the cold light of day and I know where the problems are and I know where we can put it right but it is not going to happen overnight.’
      • ‘It's interesting how, after a couple of glasses of wine late on a Friday night, Lisa's quite happy to let me put a photo of her on my website. It's slightly less interesting how, in the cold light of day, she completely changes her mind.’
      • ‘They will sit down in the cold light of day and decide what they are going to do,’ said a source.’
      • ‘If they offer me another contract, I would have to sit down and look at it in the cold light of day.’
      • ‘Matt was very remorseful, having gone through the thing in the cold light of day.’
  • out in the cold

    • Ignored; neglected.

      ‘the talks left the French out in the cold’
      • ‘Racing officials today assured York residents they would not be left out in the cold when tickets for Royal Ascot in the city finally go on sale.’
      • ‘But the decision to close the two post offices has sparked fears the elderly or disabled and those who do not own a car will be left out in the cold.’
      • ‘A York factory worker who thought she had been left out in the cold by a work share scheme has got her job back.’
      • ‘And on top of that, he steals all your friends and you're left out in the cold.’
      • ‘Many students were left out in the cold as competition for limited enrolment spots escalated.’
      • ‘All eight Cabinet posts will go the Labour members, leaving the Lib-Dems and the eight Independents out in the cold.’
      • ‘Addicts fear that they will be left out in the cold by a decision to move Rochdale's lifeline drug rehabilitation centre.’
      • ‘And we just can't get a hearing, we can't get recognition and we're still out in the cold.’
      • ‘The loophole means investors are left out in the cold if their broker misuses the money and goes bust.’
      • ‘People in Malmesbury are understandably fed up that when in comes to recycling they are being left out in the cold.’
      disliked, friendless, unliked, unloved, unbefriended, uncherished, hated, detested, despised, loathed
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  • throw (or pour) cold water on

    • Be discouraging or negative about.

      ‘she had poured cold water on the idea’
      • ‘BBC Scotland is trying to throw cold water on the hype surrounding its proposed soap, which has yet to be assigned a production team.’
      • ‘Is CBS attempting to throw cold water on Greenspan's prediction?’
      • ‘These reports, in turn, threw cold water on what was otherwise a lovely day.’
      • ‘Instead, she threw cold water on all that Internet euphoria.’
      • ‘If someone offers $5 billion worth of infrastructure do you throw cold water on it?’
      • ‘A report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development shreds government claims for success in schools and pours cold water on current educational policies.’
      • ‘According to Phillips, new research also pours cold water on hopes that children mixing in schools might break down the barriers between communities.’
      • ‘He threw cold water on my hopes of completing my law course as quickly as possible.’
      • ‘Ever since the trendy Lefties in our society managed to throw cold water on competitive sports as part of the curriculum, our children have lost out on weekly exercise in schools.’
      • ‘I'm afraid I was forced to throw cold water on these assumptions.’
      lessen, decrease, diminish, reduce, lower, moderate, damp, damp down, put a damper on, throw cold water on, calm, cool, chill, dull, blunt, tone down, deaden, temper, discourage
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Origin

Old English cald, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch koud and German kalt, also to Latin gelu frost.

Pronunciation:

cold

/kəʊld/