WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
black /blæk/USA pronunciation
adj., -er, -est, n., v. WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2015
- lacking hue and brightness;
absorbing light without reflecting any of its rays:black ink.
- characterized by absence of light; enveloped in darkness:a black night.
- of, relating to, or belonging to any of the various populations having dark skin coloring , specifically the dark-skinned peoples of Africa, Oceania, and Australia.
soiled or stained with dirt.
dismal: a black future.
Literature(of a play or writing) dealing with grim topics, esp. in a morbidly satirical way: black comedy.
sullen or hostile: a blacklook.
harmful, evil, or wicked: a black heart.
Food(of coffee) served without milk or cream:black coffee.
indicating disgrace or dishonor:a black mark.
v. [~ + object]
- Physicsthe color at one end of the gray scale, opposite to white.
- black clothing, esp. as a sign of mourning:She was dressed in black.
- to make black; put black on;
blacken:She blacked his eye with that one punch.
- [no object] to temporarily lose consciousness or memory :blacked out after they hit me on the head.
- [~ + out + object] to hide or obscure (a city) by concealing all light in defense against air raids:blacked out the city by switching off all lights.
- [~ + out + object] to impose a broadcast blackout on (an area):The network blacked out the New York City area.
black, colored, and negro have all been used to describe or name dark-skinned African peoples or their descendants. colored, now somewhat old-fashioned, is often considered offensive. In the late 1950's black began to replace negro, and it is still the most widely used and accepted term. Common as both an adjective and a noun, black is usually not capitalized except in proper names or titles (Black Muslim;
- Idioms in the black, operating at a profit:The company was operating in the black again.
Black English). By the close of the 1980's African-American, urged by leaders in the American black community, had begun to replace black in both print and speech, esp. when used by American blacks to refer to themselves.
(blak), adj., -er, -est, n., v., adv.
- lacking hue and brightness;
absorbing light without reflecting any of the rays composing it.
- characterized by absence of light;
enveloped in darkness:a black night.
- pertaining or belonging to any of the various populations characterized by dark skin pigmentation, specifically the dark-skinned peoples of Africa, Oceania, and Australia.
soiled or stained with dirt:That shirt was black within an hour.
dismal:a black outlook.
inexcusable:a black lie.
boding ill; sullen or hostile;
Food(of coffee or tea) without milk or cream.
without any moral quality or goodness;
wicked:His black heart has concocted yet another black deed.
indicating censure, disgrace, or liability to punishment:a black mark on one's record.
marked by disaster or misfortune:black areas of drought; Black Friday.
wearing black or dark clothing or armor:the black prince.
Literature, Show Businessbased on the grotesque, morbid, or unpleasant aspects of life:black comedy; black humor.
(of a check mark, flag, etc.) done or written in black to indicate, as on a list, that which is undesirable, sub-standard, potentially dangerous, etc.:Pilots put a black flag next to the ten most dangerous airports.
illegal or underground:The black economy pays no taxes.
showing a profit; not showing any losses:the first black quarter in two years.
deliberately false or intentionally misleading:black propaganda.
British Terms[Brit.]boycotted, as certain goods or products by a trade union.
Metallurgy(of steel) in the form in which it comes from the rolling mill or forge; unfinished.
Idiomsblack or white, completely either one way or another, without any intermediate state.
- Physicsthe color at one extreme end of the scale of grays, opposite to white, absorbing all light incident upon it. Cf. white (def. 20).
- a member of any of various dark-skinned peoples, esp. those of Africa, Oceania, and Australia.
black clothing, esp. as a sign of mourning:He wore black at the funeral.
Chess[Chess, Checkers.]the dark-colored men or pieces or squares.
black pigment:lamp black.
Drugs, Slang Terms[Slang.]See black beauty.
Dog and Cat Breedsa horse or other animal that is entirely black.
black and white:
- print or writing:I want that agreement in black and white.
- a monochromatic picture done with black and white only.
Idiomsin the black, operating at a profit or being out of debt (opposed to in the red):New production methods put the company in the black.
- a chocolate soda containing vanilla ice cream.
- to make black; put black on;
- British Terms[Brit.]to boycott or ban.
- to polish (shoes, boots, etc.) with blacking.
- to become black;
take on a black color;
- to lose consciousness:He blacked out at the sight of blood.
- to erase, obliterate, or suppress:News reports were blacked out.
- to forget everything relating to a particular event, person, etc.:When it came to his war experiences he blacked out completely.
- [Theat.]to extinguish all of the stage lights.
- to make or become inoperable:to black out the radio broadcasts from the U.S.
- [Mil.]to obscure by concealing all light in defense against air raids.
- [Radio and Television.]to impose a broadcast blackout on (an area).
- to withdraw or cancel (a special fare, sale, discount, etc.) for a designated period:The special air fare discount will be blacked out by the airlines over the holiday weekend.
- Food(of coffee or tea) served without milk or cream.
1 . dark, dusky;
Middle English blak, Old English blæc;
cognate with Old High German blah-;
akin to Old Norse blakkr black, blek ink
sable, ebony. 4 . dirty, dingy. 5 . sad, depressing, somber, doleful, mournful, funereal. 7 . disastrous, calamitous. 9 . sinful, inhuman, fiendish, devilish, infernal, monstrous;
nefarious, treacherous, traitorous, villainous.
1 . white. 4 . clean. 5 . hopeful, cheerful.
3, 22 . Black, colored, and Negro have all been used to describe or name the dark-skinned African peoples or their descendants. Colored, now somewhat old-fashioned, is often offensive. In the late 1950s black began to replace Negro and today is the most widely used term. Common as an adjective (black woman, man, American, people, etc.), black is also used as a noun, especially in the plural. Like other terms referring to skin color (white, yellow), black is usually not capitalized, except in proper names or titles (Black Muslim;
Black English). In the appropriate meanings Afro-American is sometimes used instead of black.
MonarchyHugo Lafayette, 1886–1971, U.S. political official: associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court 1937–71.
MonarchyJoseph, 1728–99, Scottish physician and chemist.
MonarchyShirley Temple. See Temple, Shirley.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
Black /blæk/ n
- a member of a human population having dark pigmentation of the skin
- of or relating to a Black person or Black people
Black /blæk/ n
- Sir James (Whyte). 1924–2010, British biochemist. He discovered beta-blockers and drugs for peptic ulcers: Nobel prize for physiology or medicine 1988
- Joseph. 1728–99, Scottish physician and chemist, noted for his pioneering work on carbon dioxide and heat
black /blæk/ adj
- of the colour of jet or carbon black, having no hue due to the absorption of all or nearly all incident light
- without light; completely dark
- without hope or alleviation; gloomy: the future looked black
- very dirty or soiled: black factory chimneys
- angry or resentful: she gave him black looks
- (of a play or other work) dealing with the unpleasant realities of life, esp in a pessimistic or macabre manner: black comedy
- (of coffee or tea) without milk or cream
- causing, resulting from, or showing great misfortune: black areas of unemployment
- wicked or harmful: a black lie
- (in combination): black-hearted
- causing or deserving dishonour or censure: a black crime
- (of the face) purple, as from suffocation
- Brit (of goods, jobs, works, etc) being subject to boycott by trade unionists, esp in support of industrial action elsewhere
- a black colour
- a dye or pigment of or producing this colour
- black clothing, worn esp as a sign of mourning
- a black or dark-coloured piece or square
- (usually capital) the player playing with such pieces
- complete darkness: the black of the night
- a black ball in snooker, etc
- (in roulette and other gambling games) one of two colours on which players may place even bets, the other being red
- in the black ⇒ in credit or without debt
- a black ring on a target, between the outer and the blue, scoring three points
See also blackoutEtymology: Old English blæc; related to Old Saxon blak ink, Old High German blakra to blinkˈblackish adj ˈblackishly adv ˈblackly adv ˈblackness n
- another word for blacken
- (transitive) to polish (shoes, etc) with blacking
- (transitive) to bruise so as to make black: he blacked her eye
- (transitive) Brit Austral NZ (of trade unionists) to organize a boycott of (specified goods, jobs, work, etc), esp in support of industrial action elsewhere
'Black' also found in these entries: