noun, verb (used with object) Chiefly British.

Usage note

See -or1. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for humours

Historical Examples of humours

  • It has its jealousies, and humours, and caprices, like love itself.

    Night and Morning, Complete

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • The most hopeless of humours assailed him, and he yielded to it without a struggle.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • Kenyon looked at Wentworth, who was evidently not feeling in the best of humours.

  • As your doctor, now, I prescribe a swim to cool the excessive heat of your humours.

    Captain Blood

    Rafael Sabatini

  • He was not averse to it any longer; he was simply indifferent to all in it except the humours.

British Dictionary definitions for humours


US humor


the quality of being funny
Also called: sense of humour the ability to appreciate or express that which is humorous
situations, speech, or writings that are thought to be humorous
  1. a state of mind; temper; mood
  2. (in combination)ill humour; good humour
temperament or disposition
a caprice or whim
any of various fluids in the body, esp the aqueous humour and vitreous humour
Also called: cardinal humour archaic any of the four bodily fluids (blood, phlegm, choler or yellow bile, melancholy or black bile) formerly thought to determine emotional and physical disposition
out of humour in a bad mood

verb (tr)

to attempt to gratify; indulgehe humoured the boy's whims
to adapt oneself toto humour someone's fantasies
Derived Formshumourful or US humorful, adjectivehumourless or US humorless, adjectivehumourlessness or US humorlessness, noun

Word Origin for humour

C14: from Latin humor liquid; related to Latin ūmēre to be wet, Old Norse vökr moist, Greek hugros wet
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 humours


chiefly British English spelling of humor; see -or. Related: Humourous; humourist.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper