a layer of sand or fine gravel for filling the gaps in the surfaces of a road or pavement, as one of crushed and compacted stone.

Origin of blinding

Middle English word dating back to 1350–1400; see origin at blind, -ing1
Related formsnon·blind·ing, adjectivenon·blind·ing·ly, adverbun·blind·ing, adjective



adjective, blind·er, blind·est.

unable to see; lacking the sense of sight; sightless: a blind man.
unwilling or unable to perceive or understand: They were blind to their children's faults. He was blind to all arguments.
not characterized or determined by reason or control: blind tenacity; blind chance.
not having or based on reason or intelligence; absolute and unquestioning: She had blind faith in his fidelity.
lacking all consciousness or awareness: a blind stupor.
hard to see or understand: blind reasoning.
hidden from immediate view, especially from oncoming motorists: a blind corner.
of concealed or undisclosed identity; sponsored anonymously: a blind ad signed only with a box number.
having no outlets; closed at one end: a blind passage; a blind mountain pass.
Architecture. (of an archway, arcade, etc.) having no windows, passageways, or the like.
dense enough to form a screen: a blind hedge of privet.
done without seeing; by instruments alone: blind flying.
made without some prior knowledge: a blind purchase; a blind lead in a card game.
of or relating to an experimental design that prevents investigators or subjects from knowing the hypotheses or conditions being tested.
of, relating to, or for blind persons.
Bookbinding. (of a design, title, or the like) impressed into the cover or spine of a book by a die without ink or foil.
Cookery. (of pastry shells) baked or fried without the filling.
(of a rivet or other fastener) made so that the end inserted, though inaccessible, can be headed or spread.

verb (used with object)

to make sightless permanently, temporarily, or momentarily, as by injuring, dazzling, bandaging the eyes, etc.: The explosion blinded him. We were blinded by the bright lights.
to make obscure or dark: The room was blinded by heavy curtains.
to deprive of discernment, reason, or judgment: a resentment that blinds his good sense.
to outshine; eclipse: a radiance that doth blind the sun.


something that obstructs vision, as a blinker for a horse.
a window covering having horizontal or vertical slats that can be drawn out of the way, often with the angle of the slats adjustable to admit varying amounts of light.
Chiefly Midland U.S. and British. window shade.
a lightly built structure of brush or other growths, especially one in which hunters conceal themselves: a duck blind.
an activity, organization, or the like for concealing or masking action or purpose; subterfuge: The store was just a blind for their gambling operation.
a decoy.
Slang. a bout of excessive drinking; drunken spree.
Poker. a compulsory bet made without prior knowledge of one's hand.
(used with a plural verb) persons who lack the sense of sight (usually preceded by the): The blind are said to have an acute sense of hearing.


into a stupor; to the degree at which consciousness is lost: He drank himself blind.
without the ability to see clearly; lacking visibility; blindly: They were driving blind through the snowstorm.
without guidance or forethought: They were working blind and couldn't anticipate the effects of their actions.
to an extreme or absolute degree; completely: The confidence men cheated her blind.

Origin of blind

before 1000; (adj.) Middle English blind, Old English; cognate with Gothic blinds, Old Norse blindr, German, Dutch blind (< Germanic *blindaz, perhaps akin to blend; original sense uncertain); (v.) Middle English blinden, derivative of the adj.
Related formsblind·ing·ly, adverbblind·ness, nounhalf-blind, adjectivehalf-blind·ly, adverbhalf-blind·ness, nounqua·si-blind, adjectivequa·si-blind·ly, adverbself-blind·ed, adjective

Synonyms for blind

4. irrational, uncritical, rash, thoughtless, unreasoning. 8. concealed. 28. hiding place, ambush.

Synonym study

1. Blind, stone-blind, purblind mean unable to see. Blind means unable to see with the physical eyes. Stone-blind emphasizes complete blindness. Purblind refers to weakened vision, literally or figuratively. 25. See curtain.

Antonyms for blind

Regional variation note

27. See window shade. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for blinding

Contemporary Examples of blinding

Historical Examples of blinding

  • Night came on and with it a blinding snow storm and a raging wind.

  • In one blinding rush he sensed the strength and the faith of Allister.

  • Words can give no idea of the scorching, blinding heat this August afternoon.

    The Roof of France

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

  • As he did so, the air seemed to split in two, there was a blinding rending crash.

    Slaves of Mercury

    Nat Schachner

  • It was like a rapid, blinding flash of lightning in a leaden sky.

    Therese Raquin

    Emile Zola

British Dictionary definitions for blinding



sand or grit spread over a road surface to fill up cracks
the process of laying blinding
Also called: mattress a layer of concrete made with little cement spread over soft ground to seal it so that reinforcement can be laid on it


making one blind or as if blindblinding snow
most noticeable; brilliant or dazzlinga blinding display of skill
Derived Formsblindingly, adverb



  1. unable to see; sightless
  2. (as collective noun; preceded by the)the blind
(usually foll by to) unable or unwilling to understand or discern
not based on evidence or determined by reasonblind hatred
acting or performed without control or preparation
done without being able to see, relying on instruments for information
hidden from sighta blind corner; a blind stitch
closed at one enda blind alley
completely lacking awareness or consciousnessa blind stupor
informal very drunk
having no openings or outletsa blind wall
without having been seen beforehanda blind purchase
(of cultivated plants) having failed to produce flowers or fruits
(intensifier)not a blind bit of notice
turn a blind eye to disregard deliberately or pretend not to notice (something, esp an action of which one disapproves)


without being able to see ahead or using only instrumentsto drive blind; flying blind
without adequate knowledge or information; carelesslyto buy a house blind
(intensifier) (in the phrase blind drunk)
bake blind to bake (the empty crust of a pie, pastry, etc) by half filling with dried peas, crusts of bread, etc, to keep it in shape

verb (mainly tr)

to deprive of sight permanently or temporarily
to deprive of good sense, reason, or judgment
to darken; conceal
(foll by with) to overwhelm by showing detailed knowledgeto blind somebody with science
(intr) British slang to drive very fast
(intr) British slang to curse (esp in the phrase effing and blinding)


(modifier) for or intended to help blind and partially sighted peoplea blind school
a shade for a window, usually on a roller
any obstruction or hindrance to sight, light, or air
a person, action, or thing that serves to deceive or conceal the truth
a person who acts on behalf of someone who does not wish his identity or actions to be known
Also called: blinder British old-fashioned, slang a drunken orgy; binge
poker a stake put up by a player before he examines his cards
hunting, mainly US and Canadian a screen of brush or undergrowth, in which hunters hide to shoot their quarryBrit name: hide
military a round or demolition charge that fails to explode
Derived Formsblindly, adverbblindness, noun

Word Origin for blind

Old English blind; related to Old Norse blindr, Old High German blint; Lettish blendu to see dimly; see blunder


It is preferable to avoid using phrases such as the blind . Instead you should talk about blind and partially sighted people
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

Word Origin and History for blinding

1784, past participle adjective from blind (v.). Related: Blindingly.



Old English blind "blind," also "dark, enveloped in darkness, obscure; unintelligent, lacking mental perception," probably from West Germanic *blinda- "blind" (cf. Dutch and German blind, Old Norse blindr, Gothic blinds "blind"), perhaps, via notion of "to make cloudy, deceive," from an extended Germanic form of the PIE root *bhel- (1) "to shine, flash, burn" (see bleach (v.)); cf. Lithuanian blendzas "blind," blesti "to become dark." The original sense, not of "sightless," but of "confused," perhaps underlies such phrases as blind alley (Chaucer's lanes blynde), which is older than the sense of "closed at one end" (1610s). In reference to doing something without seeing it first, by 1840. Of aviators flying without instruments or without clear observation, from 1919. Blindman's bluff is from 1580s.

The twilight, or rather the hour between the time when one can no longer see to read and the lighting of the candles, is commonly called blindman's holiday. [Grose, 1796]

Related: Blinded; blinding.



"deprive of sight," early 13c., from Old English blendan "to blind, deprive of sight; deceive," from Proto-Germanic *blandjan (see blind (adj.)); form influenced in Middle English by the adjective. Related: Blinded; blinding.



"a blind person; blind persons collectively," late Old Engish, from blind (adj.). Meaning "place of concealment" is from 1640s. Meaning "anything that obstructs sight" is from 1702.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

blinding in Medicine




Unable to see; without useful sight.
Having a maximal visual acuity of the better eye, after correction by refractive lenses, of one-tenth normal vision or less (20/200 or less on the Snellen test).
Of, relating to, or for sightless persons.
Closed at one end, as a tube or sac.
Related formsblindness n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with blinding


In addition to the idioms beginning with blind

  • blind alley
  • blind as a bat
  • blind leading the blind
  • blind side
  • blind spot

also see:

  • fly blind
  • rob someone blind
  • turn a blind eye
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.