• synonyms


[hwahyt-liv-erd, wahyt-]
  1. lacking courage; cowardly; lily-livered.
  2. lacking in vitality or spirit; pale; unhealthy.
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Origin of white-livered

First recorded in 1540–50
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for white-livered

Historical Examples of white-livered

  • Do let us hear, by all means, what the white-livered fellow has to say for himself.

    Graham's Magazine Vol XXXII. No. 5. May 1848


  • But if that white-livered hound had stood by me, I'd have beaten the lot of you!

    Nell, of Shorne Mills

    Charles Garvice

  • They may say what they like, but compared with him, Alp Arslan is a white-livered Giaour.'


    Benjamin Disraeli

  • And the white-livered accomplice is dithering with funk in there.

  • His mother was one of them white-livered Lulls, from Pomfret.

British Dictionary definitions for white-livered


  1. lacking in spirit or courage
  2. pallid and unhealthy in appearance
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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