- bare, desolate, and often windswept: a bleak plain.
- cold and piercing; raw: a bleak wind.
- without hope or encouragement; depressing; dreary: a bleak future.
Origin of bleak1
- a European freshwater fish, Alburnus alburnus, having scales with a silvery pigment that is used in the production of artificial pearls.
Origin of bleak2
Examples from the Web for bleak
Set among the vacant houses of suburban New Mexico, the film offers a bleak perspective on the possibility of growth and renewal.After The Fall: Introducing The Anti-Villain
December 21, 2014
Hitchcock saw the work of, and probably met, Murnau, the great German filmmaker--the earliest master of bleak light and shadow.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days
December 13, 2014
And surprisingly, gender may also play a role in your bleak winter outlook.9 Ways to Cope With Seasonal Affective Disorder
December 5, 2014
With no family, little community support, and no outlet for education, they face a bleak future.Liberia’s Ebola Orphans
October 14, 2014
Catastrophic sea level rise is depicted in the comics in a terrifying, bleak future.A Political History of the ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’
August 6, 2014
He stood off from us with his arms folded and his face was as bleak as a winter-bitten wood.The Trail Book
The morning was cold, and a strong wind swept the bleak hills.
A dense forest was behind them, the bleak ocean before them.
His bleak face looked soft and his deep voice had a slight tremor.The Christian
In front the day-break was bursting the confines of the bleak racks of cloud.A Son of Hagar
Sir Hall Caine
- exposed and barren; desolate
- cold and raw
- offering little hope or excitement; dismala bleak future
- any slender silvery European cyprinid fish of the genus Alburnus, esp A. lucidus, occurring in slow-flowing rivers
Word Origin and History for bleak
c.1300, "pale," from Old Norse bleikr "pale, whitish, blond," from Proto-Germanic *blaika- "shining, white," from PIE root *bhel- (1) "to shine, flash, burn" (see bleach (v.)). Later "bare, windswept" (1530s). Sense of "cheerless" is c.1719 figurative extension. The same Germanic root produced Old English blac "pale," but this died out, probably from confusion with blæc "black;" however bleak persisted, with a sense of "bare" as well as "pale."