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1. A growth of hair on the chin, cheeks, and throat of a person, especially a man.
2. A tuft or growth of hairs, bristles, or other hairlike threads on a plant or animal.
3. One who serves to divert suspicion or attention from another, especially a person of the opposite sex who accompanies a gay man or lesbian to give the impression of heterosexuality.
4. Printing The raised slope on a piece of type between the shoulder or counter and the face. Also called neck.
tr.v. beard·ed, beard·ing, beards
1. To furnish with a beard.
2. To confront boldly.

[Middle English berd, from Old English beard; see bhardh-ā- in Indo-European roots.]

beard′less adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


Medicine. 1. an excessive growth of beard.
2. the development of a beard by a woman.
a treatise on beards. — pogonologist, n.
an admirer of beards; a student of beards.
an abnormal fear or dislike of beards.
the cutting of beards.
the cultivation of beards, beard-growing.
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.




  1. Bearded as Abraham —George Garrett
  2. Bearded like a black sky before a storm —George Garrett
  3. Beard not clipped, but flowing like a bridal veil —Sinclair Lewis
  4. Beards like Spanish moss —T. Coraghessan Boyle
  5. Beard stiff and jutting like a Michelangelo prophet —Harvey Swados
  6. Bristly gray beard … as rusted as old iron —Paige Mitchell
  7. Flecks of premature gray in his beard, like the first seeds of age beginning to sprout in him —Ross Macdonald
  8. Gray beard like a goat’s chin tuft —Ernest Hemingway
  9. A heavy black beard that grew high on his cheeks like a mask —James Crumley
  10. His beard is like a bird’s nest, woven with dark silks —Bobbie Ann Mason
  11. His red beard looked like a toy doctor’s beard stuck on a child’s face —Gloria Norris
  12. His sideburn, shaped like the outline of Italy, juts out onto his jaw —Bobbie Ann Mason
  13. Long beard was spread out like a little blanket on his chest —Willis Johnson
  14. Massive sideburns hung like stirrups on either side of his face —Ross Macdonald
  15. A neat little beard, like a bird’s nest, cupped his chin —Bobbie Ann Mason
  16. A shadow of beard lay over his bony cheeks like soot on a chimney sweep —W. T. Tyler
  17. Sideburns like brackets —Max Shulman
  18. Sideburns stood like powerful bushy pillars to the beard —Saul Bellow
  19. A small goatee stuck to his chin like a swab of surgical cotton —Dorothea Straus
  20. A two-day growth of beard that made him look like a cactus —Sue Grafton
  21. Whiskers grew like small creeper upon a scorched face —Frank Swinnerton
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
"I will answer that briefly," replied the curate; "you must know then, Senor Don Quixote, that Master Nicholas, our friend and barber, and I were going to Seville to receive some money that a relative of mine who went to the Indies many years ago had sent me, and not such a small sum but that it was over sixty thousand pieces of eight, full weight, which is something; and passing by this place yesterday we were attacked by four footpads, who stripped us even to our beards, and them they stripped off so that the barber found it necessary to put on a false one, and even this young man here"- pointing to Cardenio- "they completely transformed.
'Look at him,' said she; 'his beard is like an old mop; he shall be called Grisly-beard.' So the king got the nickname of Grisly-beard.
He had a Roman nose, a snow-white, long beard, and his name was Mahon, but he insisted that it should be pronounced Mann.
Unc looked out of the window and stroked his long beard. Then he turned to the Munchkin boy and shook his head.
"So that was how we moved from the cave to the tree," old Long- Beard spoke up.
It was a face covered with several weeks' growth of ginger-colored beard. The eyes were blue and wide apart, with laughter-wrinkles in the comers that showed despite the tired and anxious expression of the whole face.
I noticed a man bending over a chess-board, but could see only a large felt hat and a red beard. We threaded our way among the tables till we came to him.
"By thy long grey beard and glittering eye, Now wherefore stopp'st thou me?
Ferdinand Street; he went there to have his beard and hair cut.
Such a yell of welcome broke forth when his black beard first protruded round the corner that I began to suspect Tarp Henry was right in his surmise, and that this assemblage was there not merely for the sake of the lecture, but because it had got rumored abroad that the famous Professor would take part in the proceedings.
'Why, you're all covered with hoar-frost, old fellow!' said the eldest brother, looking at Nikita's snow-covered face, eyes, and beard.
She combed, she brushed, she oiled, she perfumed the flowing locks and the long silky beard of Miserrimus Dexter with the strangest mixture of dullness and dexterity that I ever saw.