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lather1

[lath -er] /ˈlæð ər/
noun
1.
foam or froth made by a detergent, especially soap, when stirred or rubbed in water, as by a brush used in shaving or by hands in washing.
2.
foam or froth formed in profuse sweating, as on a horse.
3.
Informal. a state of excitement, agitation, nervous tension, or the like:
He was in a lather over my delay.
verb (used without object)
4.
to form a lather:
a soap that lathers well.
5.
to become covered with lather, as a horse.
verb (used with object)
6.
to apply lather to; cover with lather:
He lathered his face before shaving.
7.
Informal. to beat or whip.
Origin of lather1
950
before 950; Middle English; Old English lēathor soap; cognate with Old Norse lauthr (Icelandic löthur) lather, foam
Related forms
latherer, noun
unlathered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for lathering
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A magnificent soap can be made with this article, lathering very freely.

  • The horse, with lathering neck and distended nostrils, paused before them.

    The Plunderer Roy Norton
  • If during the lathering the patient feels too cold, a little olive oil should be mixed with the lather.

    Papers on Health John Kirk
  • This lathering and rubbing to be done at another time from the first rubbing for the lungs.

    Papers on Health John Kirk
  • After lathering the top of my head, she then shaved the hair off all round the wound, and I was ready for the surgeon's visit.

    Wounded and a Prisoner of War Malcolm V. (Malcolm Vivian) Hay
  • Before midnight they reached Remsen's barn and about two o'clock entered the camp on lathering horses.

    In the Days of Poor Richard Irving Bacheller
  • For a time I even succeeded in working myself up into a lathering frenzy of belief in what I was doing.

    Tramping on Life Harry Kemp
  • John finished his lathering at leisure, waded out beyond the rushes and cast himself forward into deep water.

    Fort Amity Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch
British Dictionary definitions for lathering

lather

/ˈlɑːðə; ˈlæ-/
noun
1.
foam or froth formed by the action of soap or a detergent in water
2.
foam formed by other liquid, such as the sweat of a horse
3.
(informal) a state of agitation or excitement
verb
4.
to coat or become coated with lather
5.
(intransitive) to form a lather
Derived Forms
lathery, adjective
Word Origin
Old English lēathor soap; related to Old Norse lauthr foam
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
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Word Origin and History for lathering

lather

n.

Old English lauþr "foam, washing soda," from Proto-Germanic *lauþran (cf. Old Norse lauðr "washing soap, foam"), from PIE *loutro- (cf. Gaulish lautron, Old Irish loathar "bathing tub," Greek louein "to bathe," Latin lavere "to wash"), which is from root *leu(e)- "to wash" + instrumentative suffix *-tro-. The modern noun might be a 16c. redevelopment from the verb. Meaning "violent perspiration" (especially of horses) is from 1650s. Meaning "state of agitation" (such as induces sweating) is from 1839.

v.

Old English laþran, from Proto-Germanic *lauþrjan (cf. Old Norse leyðra "to clean, wash;" see lather (n.)). Related: Lathered; lathering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for lathering

lather

verb

To hit; strike: He lathered the ball out of the park

Related Terms

in a lather

[1797+; fr the notion that frothy washing lather is produced by vigorous agitation or beating]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with lathering

lather

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Word Value for lathering

13
15
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