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[muhd] /mʌd/
wet, soft earth or earthy matter, as on the ground after rain, at the bottom of a pond, or along the banks of a river; mire.
Informal. scandalous or malicious assertions or information:
The opposition threw a lot of mud at our candidate.
Slang. brewed coffee, especially when strong or bitter.
a mixture of chemicals and other substances pumped into a drilling rig chiefly as a lubricant for the bit and shaft.
verb (used with object), mudded, mudding.
to cover, smear, or spatter with mud:
to mud the walls of a hut.
to stir up the mud or sediment in:
waders mudding the clear water.
verb (used without object), mudded, mudding.
to hide in or burrow into mud.
Origin of mud
1300-50; Middle English mudde, mode < Middle Low German mudde. Cf. mother2
Related forms
unmudded, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for mud
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • And to think you went and walked about in the mud and the east wind!

    Demos George Gissing
  • This they tow to the spot, and sink it horizontally with mud and stones.

    The Western World W.H.G. Kingston
  • The left arm of your jacket is spattered with mud in no less than seven places.

  • To these were fixed horizontal beams, the whole covered with mud and straw.

    The Western World W.H.G. Kingston
  • She thought she should miss the happy times in the mud with the other children.

    Among the Pond People Clara Dillingham Pierson
British Dictionary definitions for mud


a fine-grained soft wet deposit that occurs on the ground after rain, at the bottom of ponds, lakes, etc
(informal) slander or defamation
(informal) clear as mud, not at all clear
drag someone's name in the mud, to disgrace or defame someone
(informal) here's mud in your eye, a humorous drinking toast
(informal) someone's name is mud, someone is disgraced
(informal) throw mud at, sling mud at, to slander; vilify
verb muds, mudding, mudded
(transitive) to soil or cover with mud
Word Origin
C14: probably from Middle Low German mudde; compare Middle High German mot swamp, mud, Swedish modd slush
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 mud

mid-14c., cognate with and probably from Middle Low German mudde, Middle Dutch modde "thick mud," from Proto-Germanic *mud- from PIE *(s)meu-/*mu- [Buck], found in many words denoting "wet" or "dirty" (cf. Greek mydos "damp, moisture," Old Irish muad "cloud," Polish muł "slime," Sanskrit mutra- "urine," Avestan muthra- "excrement, filth"); related to German Schmutz "dirt," which also is used for "mud" in roads, etc., to avoid dreck, which originally meant "excrement." Welsh mwd is from English. Replaced native fen.

Meaning "lowest or worst of anything" is from 1580s. As a word for "coffee," it is hobo slang from 1925; as a word for "opium" from 1922. To throw or hurl mud "make disgraceful accusations" is from 1762. To say (one's) name is mud and mean "(one) is discredited" is first recorded 1823, from mud in obsolete sense of "a stupid twaddling fellow" (1708). Mud in your eye as a toast recorded from 1912, American English. Mud puppy "salamander" is from 1889, American English; mud bath is from 1798; mud pie is from 1788.

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



  1. Defamatory assertions and accusations: Watch out, they'll throw a lot of mud at you (1786+)
  2. pium before it is readied for smoking (1922+ Narcotics)
  3. Coffee (1925+ Hoboes)

Related Terms

someone's name is mud, stick in the mud

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