bleat

views updated

bleat / blēt/ • v. [intr.] (of a sheep, goat, or calf) make a characteristic wavering cry: the lamb was bleating weakly. [as n.] (bleating) the silence was broken by the plaintive bleating of sheep. ∎  speak or complain in a weak, querulous, or foolish way: he bleated incoherently about the report.• n. [in sing.] the wavering cry made by a sheep, goat, or calf: the distant bleat of sheep in the field. ∎  a person's plaintive cry: his despairing bleat touched her heart. ∎ inf. a complaint: they're hoping that I'll bow to their idiotic arrangements without a bleat.

bleat

views updated

bleat OE. blǣtan = OHG. blāzen, Du. blaten; of imit. orig.