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See more synonyms for ruddy on Thesaurus.com
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.
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  1. British Slang. damned: He'd ruddy well better be there.
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Origin of ruddy

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

Related Words

blooming, crimson, florid, flush, flushed, fresh, full-blooded, glowing, healthy, pink, red, roseate, rosy, rubicund, sanguine, blowsy, reddish, ruby, scarlet

Examples from the Web for ruddy

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Here were two with wrists and sleeves all spotted with the ruddy grape juice.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • Within the door of the cottage you discern the wife, with her ruddy English cheek.

    Main Street

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • But nowhere were there faces of ruddy tan as one sees in a world of sun.

  • A bank of clouds had swallowed the last vestige of ruddy light.

    The Innocent Adventuress

    Mary Hastings Bradley

  • Under his ruddy tan his skin was no longer fresh, but dull and sallow.

    Louisiana Lou

    William West Winter

British Dictionary definitions for ruddy


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
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adverb, adjective informal, mainly British
  1. (intensifier) bloody; damneda ruddy fool
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Derived Formsruddily, adverbruddiness, noun

Word Origin

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 ruddy


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.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper