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white Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun a member of the Caucasoid race
    White person; Caucasian.
  2. noun the quality or state of the achromatic color of greatest lightness (bearing the least resemblance to black)
  3. noun United States jurist appointed chief justice of the United States Supreme Court in 1910 by President Taft; noted for his work on antitrust legislation (1845-1921)
    Edward Douglas White Jr.; Edward White; Edward D. White.
  4. noun Australian writer (1912-1990)
    Patrick White; Patrick Victor Martindale White.
  5. noun United States political journalist (1915-1986)
    Theodore Harold White; T. H. White.
  6. noun United States architect (1853-1906)
    Stanford White.
  7. noun United States writer noted for his humorous essays (1899-1985)
    E. B. White; Elwyn Brooks White.
  8. noun United States educator who in 1865 (with Ezra Cornell) founded Cornell University and served as its first president (1832-1918)
    Andrew D. White; Andrew Dickson White.
  9. noun a tributary of the Mississippi River that flows southeastward through northern Arkansas and southern Missouri
    White River.
  10. noun the white part of an egg; the nutritive and protective gelatinous substance surrounding the yolk consisting mainly of albumin dissolved in water
    egg white; ovalbumin; albumen.
    • she separated the whites from the yolks of several eggs
  11. noun (board games) the lighter pieces
  12. noun (usually in the plural) trousers made of flannel or gabardine or tweed or white cloth
    gabardine; tweed; flannel.
  13. verb turn white
    • This detergent will whiten your laundry
  14. adjective being of the achromatic color of maximum lightness; having little or no hue owing to reflection of almost all incident light
    • as white as fresh snow
    • a bride's white dress
  15. adjective of or belonging to a racial group having light skin coloration
    • voting patterns within the white population
  16. adjective satellite free from moral blemish or impurity; unsullied
    • in shining white armor
  17. adjective satellite marked by the presence of snow
    • a white Christmas
    • the white hills of a northern winter
  18. adjective satellite restricted to whites only
    • under segregation there were even white restrooms and white drinking fountains
    • a lily-white movement which would expel Negroes from the organization
  19. adjective satellite glowing white with heat
    • white flames
    • a white-hot center of the fire
  20. adjective satellite benevolent; without malicious intent
    • that's white of you
  21. adjective satellite (of a surface) not written or printed on
    clean; blank.
    • blank pages
    • fill in the blank spaces
    • a clean page
    • wide white margins
  22. adjective satellite (of coffee) having cream or milk added
  23. adjective satellite (of hair) having lost its color
    • the white hairs of old age
  24. adjective satellite anemic looking from illness or emotion
    blanched; bloodless; ashen; livid.
    • a face turned ashen
    • the invalid's blanched cheeks
    • tried to speak with bloodless lips
    • a face livid with shock
    • lips...livid with the hue of death"- Mary W. Shelley
    • lips white with terror
    • a face white with rage
  25. adjective satellite of summer nights in northern latitudes where the sun barely sets
    • white nights

White adjective
OE. whit, AS. hwt; akin to OFries. and OS. hwit, D. wit, G. weiss, OHG. wiz, hwiz, Icel. hvitr, Sw. hvit, Dan. hvid, Goth. hweits, Lith. szveisti, to make bright, Russ. sviet' light, Skr. vta white, vit to be bright. . Cf. Wheat, Whitsunday.
comparative Whiter ; superlative Whitest
  1. Reflecting to the eye all the rays of the spectrum combined; not tinted with any of the proper colors or their mixtures; having the color of pure snow; snowy; -- the opposite of black or dark; as, white paper; a white skin. "Pearls white." Chaucer.
    White as the whitest lily on a stream. Longfellow.
  2. Destitute of color, as in the cheeks, or of the tinge of blood color; pale; pallid; as, white with fear.
    Or whispering with white lips, "The foe! They come! they come!" Byron.
  3. Having the color of purity; free from spot or blemish, or from guilt or pollution; innocent; pure.
    White as thy fame, and as thy honor clear. Dryden.
    No whiter page than Addison's remains. Pope.
  4. Gray, as from age; having silvery hair; hoary.
    Your high engendered battles 'gainst a head So old and white as this. Shak.
  5. Characterized by freedom from that which disturbs, and the like; fortunate; happy; favorable.
    On the whole, however, the dominie reckoned this as one of the white days of his life. Sir W. Scott.
  6. Regarded with especial favor; favorite; darling.
    Come forth, my white spouse. Chaucer.
    I am his white boy, and will not be gullet. Ford.
    White is used in many self-explaining compounds, as white-backed, white-bearded, white-footed.
White noun
  1. The color of pure snow; one of the natural colors of bodies, yet not strictly a color, but a composition of all colors; the opposite of black; whiteness. See the Note under Color, n., 1.
    Finely attired in a of white. Shak.
  2. Something having the color of snow; something white, or nearly so; as, the white of the eye.
  3. Specifically, the central part of the butt in archery, which was formerly painted white; the center of a mark at which a missile is shot.
    'T was I won the wager, though you hit the white. Shak.
  4. A person with a white skin; a member of the white, or Caucasian, races of men.
  5. A white pigment; as, Venice white.
  6. (Zoöl.) Any one of numerous species of butterflies belonging to Pieris, and allied genera in which the color is usually white. See Cabbage butterfly, under Cabbage.
White transitive verb
AS. hwitan.
imperfect & past participle Whited; present participle & verbal noun Whiting
  1. To make white; to whiten; to whitewash; to bleach.
    Whited sepulchers, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of . . . uncleanness. Matt. xxiii. 27.
    So as no fuller on earth can white them. Mark. ix. 3.

Webster 1913