beldame


Also found in: Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

bel·dam

or bel·dame  (bĕl′dəm, -dăm)
n.
An old woman, especially one who is considered ugly.

[Middle English, grandmother : bel, indicating respect (from Old French bel, fine, from Latin bellus; see deu- in Indo-European roots) + dame, lady; see dame.]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.beldame - an ugly evil-looking old womanbeldame - an ugly evil-looking old woman  
old woman - a woman who is old
2.beldame - a woman of advanced agebeldame - a woman of advanced age    
old woman - a woman who is old

beldam

or beldame
noun
An ugly, frightening old woman:
Slang: biddy.
Archaic: trot.
References in classic literature ?
In fact, she is a regular beldame. You have seen her once, so what do you think of her?
The moment he produced the glittering earbobs, the whimpering and whining of the sempiternal beldame was at an end.
But it was not the withered hand of the angry old beldame that fell on the managerial ear, but the envelope itself, the cause of all the trouble, the magic envelope that opened with the blow, scattering the bank-notes, which escaped in a fantastic whirl of giant butterflies.
"I have a curiosity to hear my fortune told: therefore, Sam, order the beldame forward."
"What work are you about now?" says Judy, making an ancient snap at her like a very sharp old beldame.
Jurgis was willing, and so was Duane, and so they went to one of the high-class poolrooms where brokers and merchants gambled (with society women in a private room), and they put up ten dollars each upon a horse called "Black Beldame," a six to one shot, and won.
'If ever you listen to these beldames again, I'll bite you.'
"You're gossiping like a pair of beldames," she chided them.
Oh what a yell of triumph was sent up By thousands, when from King William's statue The stern gigantic figure of Reform, Full of the very spirit of the TIMES, Lept down amid the mass municipal; And bearing in his arms the wizen'd witch, Who had been doomed to die by Eighteen men, Who had their city's glory deep at heart, He tossed the blotted Beldame 'midst the flames!
The biggest contributor to his record was Sightseek, a filly who won four Grade 1s that year including the Beldame Stakes.
Agnes" first runs into "the old beldame" (90) Angela in the castle, and ends up stumped by her expression: associating Angela with a book, and describing Porphyro's confusion as a failed attempt at reading, Keats narrates, "Porphyro upon her face doth look, / Like puzzled urchin on an aged crone / Who keepeth clos'd a wond'rous riddle-book" (127-30).