- a necklace of beads: You don't have your beads on this evening.
- a rosary.
- Obsolete.devotions; prayers.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- beacon hill,
- beacon school,
- beacon status,
- bead and reel,
- bead lightning,
- bead molding,
- bead plane,
- bead plant
Origin of bead
Examples from the Web for bead
The wall directly opposite the entrance was covered in colorful glass and bead mosaics.
The bead embroidery on the back of her coat said “Revolution.”Ilya Yashin & Ksenia Sobchak, the Russian Opposition’s Romeo & Juliet|Anna Nemtsova|December 17, 2012|DAILY BEAST
It also takes years of training to be able to sew, embroider, bead, and otherwise embellish these clothes.Chanel, Armani, and Givenchy Present Their Haute-Couture Collections in Paris|Robin Givhan|July 4, 2012|DAILY BEAST
In contrast, Hell on Wheels often has too much happening to get a bead on where the story is going.
Getting the gun out quickly and drawing a bead on a target, I decided, would challenge even Billy the Kid.
He drew his bead back into the room and looked at Emma with a laugh of satisfaction.Demos|George Gissing
I could carry my bead purse to school every day, or wear my coral chain a little while before I go to sleep at night.New Chronicles of Rebecca|Kate Douglas Wiggin
A bead similar in shape, color and marking rested at that very moment over my own heart.The Millionaire Baby|Anna Katharine Green
If the bead is completely saturated, it retains its opalescent appearance.
A shell somewhat similar to this made into a bead was found in the Nez Perce region.The Archaeology of the Yakima Valley|Harlan Ingersoll Smith
Word Origin for bead
mid-14c., bede "prayer bead," from Old English gebed "prayer," with intensive or collective prefix *ge- + Proto-Germanic *bidjan "to pray, entreat" (cf. Middle Dutch bede, Old High German beta, German bitte, Gothic bida "prayer, request"), from PIE *gwhedh- "to ask, pray." Shift in meaning came via beads threaded on a string to count prayers, and in phrases like to bid one's beads, to count one's beads. German cognate Bitte is the usual word for conversational request "please." Also related to bid (Old English biddan) and Gothic bidjan "to ask, pray." Sense transferred to "drop of liquid" 1590s; to "small knob forming front sight of a gun" 1831 (Kentucky slang); hence draw a bead on "take aim at," 1841, U.S. colloquial.
1570s, "to adorn with beads," from bead (n.). Meaning "to string like beads" is from 1883. Related: Beaded; beading.
see draw a bead on.