adjective, rud·di·er, rud·di·est.
  1. of or having a fresh, healthy red color: a ruddy complexion.
  2. red or reddish.
  3. British Slang. damned: a ruddy fool.
  1. British Slang. damned: He'd ruddy well better be there.

Origin of ruddy

before 1100; Middle English rudi, Old English rudig. See rudd, -y1
Related formsrud·di·ly, adverbrud·di·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ruddier

Historical Examples of ruddier

  • Prouder man, and heartier and ruddier, could not be seen, she thought.

  • Torriano used to be and staid there a while with Mr. Ashwell, Spicer and Ruddier.

  • Look at him: his cheek is ruddier and browner than any of us.

    Vassall Morton

    Francis Parkman

  • His face was ruddier, his eyes had more sparkle, his smile was easier.


    Howard Vincent O'Brien

  • She appealed to Miss Taylor's ruddier and daintier vision but dimly and distantly as some memory of the past.

British Dictionary definitions for ruddier


adjective -dier or -diest
  1. (of the complexion) having a healthy reddish colour, usually resulting from an outdoor life
  2. coloured red or pinka ruddy sky
adverb, adjective informal, mainly British
  1. (intensifier) bloody; damneda ruddy fool
Derived Formsruddily, adverbruddiness, noun

Word Origin for ruddy

Old English rudig, from rudu redness (see rudd); related to Old High German rot red 1, Swedish rod, Old Norse rythga to make rusty
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 ruddier



late Old English rudig "rubicund," probably from rudu "redness," related to read "red" (see red (adj.1)). As a British slang euphemism for bloody (q.v.), first recorded 1914. Related: Ruddiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper