Nearby words

  1. becquerel ,
  2. becquerel effect,
  3. becquerel rays,
  4. becripple,
  5. bectu,
  6. bed and board,
  7. bed and breakfast,
  8. bed and pep,
  9. bed bath,
  10. bed board


Origin of bed

before 1000; Middle English; Old English bedd; cognate with Old Frisian, Dutch bed, Old Saxon bed(de), Old High German betti (German Bett), Gothic badi < Germanic *badjan (neuter); akin to Latin fodere to dig, OCS bodǫ, Lithuanian bedù I pierce, Welsh bedd a grave; presumably a bed was dug out in the ground

Related formsbed·less, adjectivebed·like, adjectivein·ter·bed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for put to bed


abbreviation for

Bachelor of Education



a piece of furniture on which to sleep
the mattress and bedclothes on such a piece of furniturean unmade bed
sleep or resttime for bed
any place in which a person or animal sleeps or rests
med a unit of potential occupancy in a hospital or residential institution
informal a place for sexual intercourse
informal sexual intercourse
a plot of ground in which plants are grown, esp when considered together with the plants in ita flower bed
the bottom of a river, lake, or sea
a part of this used for cultivation of a plant or animaloyster beds
a layer of crushed rock, gravel, etc, used as a foundation for a road, railway, etc
a layer of mortar in a masonry wall
the underside of a brick, tile, slate, etc, when in positionCompare back 1 (def. 12)
any underlying structure or part
a layer of rock, esp sedimentary rock
the flat part of a letterpress printing press onto or against which the type forme is placed
a layer of solid particles of an absorbent, catalyst, or reagent through which a fluid is passed during the course of a chemical reaction or other process
a machine base on which a moving part carrying a tool or workpiece slideslathe bed
a bed of roses a situation of comfort or ease
to be brought to bed archaic to give birth (to)
bed of nails
  1. a situation or position of extreme difficulty
  2. a bed studded with nails on which a fakir lies
get out of bed on the wrong side informal to be ill-tempered from the start of the day
go to bed
  1. (often foll by with)to have sexual intercourse (with)
  2. journalism printing(of a newspaper, magazine, etc) to go to press; start printing
in bed with informal cooperating closely with (another person, organization, government, etc.) esp covertly
put to bed
  1. journalismto finalize work on (a newspaper, magazine, etc) so that it is ready to go to press
  2. printingto lock up the type forme of (a publication) in the press before printing
take to one's bed to remain in bed, esp because of illness

verb beds, bedding or bedded

(usually foll by down) to go to or put into a place to sleep or rest
(tr) to have sexual intercourse with
(tr) to place, fix, or sink firmly into position; embed
geology to form or be arranged in a distinct layer; stratify
(tr often foll by out) to plant in a bed of soil
See also bed in

Word Origin for bed

Old English bedd; related to Old Norse bethr, Old High German betti, Gothic badi

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 put to bed
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for put to bed




A piece of furniture for reclining and sleeping, typically consisting of a flat, rectangular frame and a mattress resting on springs.
Such a piece of furniture used for rest, recuperation, or treatment.
A supporting, underlying, or securing base or structure, especially an anatomical one.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for put to bed



A layer of sediments or rock, such as coal, that extends under a large area and has a distinct set of characteristics that distinguish it from other layers below and above it.
The bottom of a body of water, such as a lake, stream, or ocean.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with put to bed

put to bed

Complete something and either set it aside or send it on to the next step, as in We put the magazine to bed at ten, or They said they'd put the whole project to bed at least a month ago. This expression, transferring nighttime retirement to other kinds of completion, was first applied to a newspaper, where it meant “send to press,” that is, start to print. [Mid-1900s]


In addition to the idioms beginning with bed

  • bed and board
  • bed and breakfast
  • bed of roses

also see:

  • early to bed
  • get up on the wrong side of bed
  • go to bed with
  • make one's bed and lie in it
  • make the bed
  • put to bed
  • should have stood in bed
  • strange bedfellows
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.