Dictionary » W » White



1. Reflecting to the eye all the rays of the spectrum combined; not tinted with any of the proper colours or their mixtures; having the colour of pure snow; snowy; the opposite of black or dark; as, white paper; a white skin. Pearls white. White as the whitest lily on a stream. (Longfellow)

2. Destitute of colour, as in the cheeks, or of the tinge of blood colour; pale; pallid; as, white with fear. Or whispering with white lips, The foe! They come! they come!' (Byron)

3. Having the colour of purity; free from spot or blemish, or from guilt or pollution; innocent; pure. White as thy fame, and as thy honor clear. (Dryden) No whiter page than Addison's remains. (pope)

4. Gray, as from age; having silvery hair; hoary. Your high engendered battles 'gainst a head So old and white as this. (Shak)

5. Characterised by freedom from that which disturbs, and the like; fortunate; happy; favorable. On the whole, however, the dominie reckoned this as one of the white days of his life. (Sir W. Scott)

6. Regarded with especial favor; favorite; darling. Come forth, my white spouse. (Chaucer) I am his white boy, and will not be gullet. (Ford)

White is used in many self-explaining compounds, as white-backed, white-bearded, white-footed. White alder.

A void space of the breadth of a line, on a printed page; a blank line. White meat. Any light-coloured flesh, especially of poultry. Food made from milk or eggs, as butter, cheese, etc. Driving their cattle continually with them, and feeding only upon their milk and white meats. (Spenser) White merganser, the smew; so called from the white crest and the band of black feathers on the back of its head, which give the appearance of a hood. White oak.

(Science: botany) The opium-yielding poppy. See Poppy. White powder, a kind of gunpowder formerly believed to exist, and to have the power of exploding without noise. A pistol charged with white powder. (Beau. & Fl) White precipitate.

The willow warbler; so called from the colour of the under parts.

Origin: OE. Whit, AS. Hwt; akin to OFries. And OS. Hwit, D. Wit, G. Weiss, OHG. Wiz, hwiz, Icel. Hvitr, Sw. Hvit, Dan. Hvid, Goth. Hweits, Lith. Szveisti, to make bright, Russ. Sviet' light, Skr. Vta white, vit to be bright. Cf. Wheat, Whitsunday.

1. The colour of pure snow; one of the natural colours of bodies, yet not strictly a colour, but a composition of all colours; the opposite of black; whiteness. See the note under Colour. Finely attired in a of white. (Shak)

2. Something having the colour of snow; something white, or nearly so; as, the white of the eye.

3. Specifically, the central part of the butt in archery, which was formerly painted white; the center of a mark at which a missile is shot. 'T was I won the wager, though you hit the white. (Shak)

4. A person with a white skin; a member of the white, or Caucasian, races of men.

5. A white pigment; as, Venice white.

6. (Science: zoology) Any one of numerous species of butterflies belonging to Pieris, and allied genera in which the colour is usually white. See Cabbage butterfly, under Cabbage. Black and white. See Black. Flake white, paris white, etc. See Flack, Paris, etc.

(Science: botany) White of a seed, the white part of the ball of the eye surrounding the transparent cornea. Being of the achromatic color of maximum lightness; having little or no hue owing to reflection of almost all incident light; as white as fresh snow; a bride's white dress.

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