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[hwahyt-liv-erd, wahyt-] /ˈʰwaɪtˈlɪv ərd, ˈwaɪt-/
lacking courage; cowardly; lily-livered.
lacking in vitality or spirit; pale; unhealthy.
Origin of white-livered
First recorded in 1540-50 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for white-livered
Historical Examples
  • I've got a hook in him already, and if he hangs on and off as he's been doing, the white-livered skunk!

    Grif B. L. (Benjamin Leopold) Farjeon
  • His mother was one of them white-livered Lulls, from Pomfret.

  • But why the hell should any one want to make friends with a white-livered pup like you?

    The Sheriff's Son William MacLeod Raine
  • I was a fool ever to have got mixed up with such a white-livered, puling baby.

    Ted and the Telephone Sara Ware Bassett
  • Then, by thunder, you white-livered beachcomber, a rope will touch you till you're flayed.

    The Vision Spendid William MacLeod Raine
  • But if that white-livered hound had stood by me, I'd have beaten the lot of you!

    Nell, of Shorne Mills Charles Garvice
  • Nothin', only you're a white-livered stinker, an' I'm jest a-spoilin' foh a fight with you-all.

    Tramping on Life Harry Kemp
  • They may say what they like, but compared with him, Alp Arslan is a white-livered Giaour.'

    Alroy Benjamin Disraeli
  • "Well, I should despise him as white-livered and milk-galled if he had not sprung at me," said Mahomet.

  • And the white-livered accomplice is dithering with funk in there.

    Ambrotox and Limping Dick Oliver Fleming
British Dictionary definitions for white-livered


lacking in spirit or courage
pallid and unhealthy in appearance
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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