bull

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bull1 a bull is the emblem of St Luke, St Frideswide, and St Thomas Aquinas; the Bull is the zodiacal sign and constellation Taurus.

On the Stock Exchange, a person who buys shares hoping to sell them at a higher price later is known as a bull; the term is recorded from the early 18th century.



In Egyptian mythology, the god Apis was depicted as a bull, symbolizing fertility and strength in war.



The word dates from late Old English (in form bula, recorded in place names), and comes from Old Norse boli.


bull in a china shop a clumsy person in a situation calling for adroit movement; the phrase is recorded from the mid 19th century.
bull market a market in which share prices are rising, encouraging buying (compare bear market at bear2).
bull-roarer a sacred object of Australian Aboriginal ceremony and ritual, so called because of a fancied resemblance to a child's toy. A bull-roarer consists of a flat oval carved piece of wood, pointed at each end and pierced at one end; a string is threaded through the hole so that the bull-roarer can be swung round, making a booming noise. It is also known as a churinga.
Bull Run a small river in eastern Virginia, scene of two Confederate victories, in 1861 and 1862, during the American Civil War.
like a bull at a gate with the angry vigour of a bull charging a restraining (‘five-barred’) gate; the expression is recorded from the late 19th century.
take the bull by the horns take a firm grasp on a difficult issue; the expression is recorded from the early 18th century.

bull

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bull1 / boŏl/ • n. 1. an uncastrated male bovine animal: [as adj.] bull calves. ∎  a large male animal, esp. a whale or elephant. ∎  (the Bull) the zodiacal sign or constellation Taurus.2. Stock Market a person who buys shares hoping to sell them at a higher price later. Often contrasted with bear2 .• v. [tr.] push or drive powerfully or violently: he bulled the motorcycle clear of the tunnel.PHRASES: take the bull by the horns deal bravely and decisively with a difficult, dangerous, or unpleasant situation.bull2 • n. a papal edict.bull3 • n. inf. stupid or untrue talk or writing; nonsense: much of what he says is sheer bull.

Bull

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88. Bull

  1. Apis bull of Memphis, created in Osiris image. [Egypt. Myth.: Benét, 41]
  2. Buchis black bull worshiped as chief city god. [Egypt. Rel.: Parrinder, 52]
  3. Cretan bull sacred to Poseidon; sent to Minos. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 68]
  4. Ferdinand daydreaming bull who refuses to fight in ring. [Childrens Lit.: The Story of Ferdinand ]
  5. Minotaur fabulous monster of Crete, half-bull, half-man. [Gk. Myth.: EB, VI: 922]
  6. Taurus constellation of the zodiac symbolized by the bull. [Astrology: EB, IX: 844]

bull

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bull1 male of the ox, etc. Late OE. bula (in place-names), ME. bole — ON. boli, corr, to MLG. bulle, MDu. bulle, bolle (Du. bul), f. a base whence the OE. dim. bulluc BULLOCK.

bull

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bull2 papal edict XIII; official seal XIV. — (O)F. bulle — L. bulla bubble, round object, in medL. seal, sealed document; cf. BOIL2.

bull

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bull2 a papal edict. Recorded from Middle English, the word comes via Old French from Latin bulla ‘bubble, rounded object’, in medieval Latin, ‘seal or sealed document’. Also called papal bull.

bull

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bull3 †jest; expression containing contradiction in terms or implying ludicrous inconsistency. XVII. of unkn. orig.

Bull

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Bull (Lat. bulla, ‘seal’). A papal document or mandate, so-called because sealed officially.

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