WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
bead /bid/USA pronunciation n. 
  1. Jewelrya small object of glass, wood, etc., with a hole through it, often put on a string with others of its kind in necklaces, etc.
  2. beads, [plural]
    • a necklace of beads.
    • a rosary.
  3. a small drop of liquid or a bubble in a liquid: Beads of sweat popped out on his head.

  • to form beads or a bead on: [+ object]The perspiration beaded his face.[no object]The moisture beaded on the glass.
  • idiom
    1. Idiomsdraw or get a bead on, [+ object] to take careful aim at (a target):The hit man got a bead on his victim.

    Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    bead /biːd/ n
    1. a small usually spherical piece of glass, wood, plastic, etc, with a hole through it by means of which it may be strung with others to form a necklace, etc
    2. a small drop of moisture
    3. a small bubble in or on a liquid
    4. a small metallic knob acting as the sight of a firearm
    5. draw a bead onto aim a rifle or pistol at

    6. Also called: astragal a small convex moulding having a semicircular cross section
    7. count one's beads, say one's beads, tell one's beadsto pray with a rosary
    1. (transitive) to decorate with beads
    2. to form into beads or drops
    Etymology: Old English bed prayer; related to Old High German gibet prayer

    ˈbeaded adj

    'bead' also found in these entries:

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