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grey

[grey]
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adjective, grey·er, grey·est, noun, verb (used with or without object)
  1. gray1.
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Related formsgrey·ly, adverbgrey·ness, nounun·greyed, adjective

Grey

[grey]
noun
  1. Charles, 2nd Earl,1764–1845, British statesman: prime minister 1830–34.
  2. Sir EdwardViscount Fallodon, 1862–1933, British statesman.
  3. Sir George,1812–98, British statesman and colonial administrator: prime minister of New Zealand 1877–79.
  4. Lady JaneLady Jane Dudley, 1537–54, descendant of Henry VII of England; executed under orders of Mary I to eliminate her as a rival for the throne.
  5. Zane [zeyn] /zeɪn/, 1875–1939, U.S. novelist.
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gray1

or grey

[grey]
adjective, gray·er, gray·est.
  1. of a color between white and black; having a neutral hue.
  2. dark, dismal, or gloomy: gray skies.
  3. dull, dreary, or monotonous.
  4. having gray hair; gray-headed.
  5. pertaining to old age; mature.
  6. Informal. pertaining to, involving, or composed of older persons: gray households.
  7. old or ancient.
  8. indeterminate and intermediate in character: The tax audit concentrated on deductions in the gray area between purely personal and purely business expenses.
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noun
  1. any achromatic color; any color with zero chroma, intermediate between white and black.
  2. something of this color.
  3. gray material or clothing: to dress in gray.
  4. an unbleached and undyed condition.
  5. (often initial capital letter) a member of the Confederate army in the American Civil War or the army itself.Compare blue(def 5).
  6. a horse of a gray color.
  7. a horse that appears white but is not an albino.
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verb (used with or without object)
  1. to make or become gray.
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Origin of gray1

before 900; Middle English; Old English grǣg; cognate with German grau
Related formsgray·ly, adverbgray·ness, nounun·grayed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for grey

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The old man was peering at him sharply from under the grey protruding brows.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • She was a widow, and had loved her husband, and her sky was still tinged with grey.

    Viviette

    William J. Locke

  • For half an hour I stood there in the grey November rain surrounded by a jeering mob.

    De Profundis

    Oscar Wilde

  • It will be seen that our grey skies and mean-looking dwellings have compensations.

    In the Heart of Vosges

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

  • It was shaded by dark chestnut hair, just silvered with grey.


British Dictionary definitions for grey

grey

now esp US gray

adjective
  1. of a neutral tone, intermediate between black and white, that has no hue and reflects and transmits only a little light
  2. greyish in colour or having parts or marks that are greyish
  3. dismal or dark, esp from lack of light; gloomy
  4. neutral or dull, esp in character or opinion
  5. having grey hair
  6. of or relating to people of middle age or abovegrey power
  7. ancient; venerable
  8. (of textiles) natural, unbleached, undyed, and untreated
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noun
  1. any of a group of grey tones
  2. grey cloth or clothingdressed in grey
  3. an animal, esp a horse, that is grey or whitish
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verb
  1. to become or make grey
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Derived Formsgreyish or mainly US grayish, adjectivegreyly or mainly US grayly, adverbgreyness or mainly US grayness, noun

Word Origin

Old English grǣg; related to Old High German grāo, Old Norse grar

Grey

noun
  1. Charles, 2nd Earl Grey. 1764–1845, British statesman. As Whig prime minister (1830–34), he carried the Reform Bill of 1832 and the bill for the abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire (1833)
  2. Sir Edward, 1st Viscount Grey of Fallodon. 1862–1933, British statesman; foreign secretary (1905–16)
  3. Sir George. 1812–98, British statesman and colonial administrator; prime minister of New Zealand (1877–79)
  4. Lady Jane. 1537–54, queen of England (July 9–19, 1553); great-granddaughter of Henry VII. Her father-in-law, the Duke of Northumberland, persuaded Edward VI to alter the succession in her favour, but after ten days as queen she was imprisoned and later executed
  5. Zane. 1875–1939, US author of Westerns, including Riders of the Purple Sage (1912)
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gray1

adjective, noun, verb
  1. a variant spelling (now esp US) of grey
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Derived Formsgrayish, adjectivegrayly, adverbgrayness, noun

gray2

noun
  1. the derived SI unit of absorbed ionizing radiation dose or kerma equivalent to an absorption per unit mass of one joule per kilogram of irradiated material. 1 gray is equivalent to 100 radsSymbol: Gy
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Word Origin

C20: named after Louis Harold Gray (1905–65), English physicist

Gray

noun
  1. Thomas. 1716–71, English poet, best known for his Elegy written in a Country Churchyard (1751)
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for grey

see gray.

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gray

adj.

Old English græg (Mercian grei), from Proto-Germanic *grisja- "gray" (cf. Old Norse grar, Old Frisian gre, Middle Dutch gra, Dutch graw, Old High German grao, German grau), with no certain cognates outside Germanic. French gris, Spanish gris, Italian grigio, Medieval Latin griseus are Germanic loan-words.

The distinction between British grey and U.S. gray developed 20c. The noun is c.1200, from the adjective. Gray as figurative for "Southern troops in the U.S. Civil War" is first recorded 1863, in reference to their uniform color. Expression the gray mare is the better horse in reference to households ruled by wives is recorded from 1540s. The verb is 1610s (with an isolated instance from late 14c.). Related: Grayed; graying.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

grey in Medicine

gray

(grā)
n.
  1. A unit for a specific absorbed dose of radiation equal to 100 rads.
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Gray

Henry 1825?-1861
  1. British anatomist whose work Anatomy, Descriptive and Surgical (1858), known as Gray's Anatomy, remains a standard text.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

grey in Science

gray

[grā]
  1. The SI derived unit used to measure the energy absorbed by a substance per unit weight of the substance when exposed to radiation. One gray is equal to one joule per kilogram, or 100 rads. The gray is named after British physicist Louis Harold Gray (1905-1965).
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with grey

grey

see gray.

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gray

In addition to the idioms beginning with gray

also see:

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.