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- (transitive) To cause to become obscure or muddled.
- 1688, Thomas Tryon, Monthly Observations for the Preserving of Health with a Long and Comfortable Life, London, page 9:
- […] Intemperance and Superfluity beclouds the Mind, dulls the edge of the Apprehension, and brings upon it an unmanly Languor, bearing down all the noble Faculties of the Soul into Ignorance and Stupidity […]
- (transitive, usually passive) To cover or surround with clouds.
- 1824, The New England Farmer, volume 2, page 176:
- And then while you're a cooking, they say, / Such a fogo beclouds all the room, / That the girls have to group out the way, / In search of the tongs or the broom.
- 1903, Joseph Conrad, Ford Madox Hueffer [i.e., Ford Madox Ford], chapter X, in Romance […], London: Smith, Elder & Co., […], →OCLC, part fourth (Casa Riego), page 366:
- A long sun ray shot to the zenith from the beclouded west, crossing obliquely in a faint red bar the purple band of sky above the ravine.
- (transitive, figurative) To cast in a negative light, cast a pall over, darken.
- 1856, Abraham Lincoln, speech given on 19 May, 1856 in Speeches and Letters of Abraham Lincoln, London: J.M. Dent, 1907, p. 46,
- We live in the midst of alarms; anxiety beclouds the future; we expect some new disaster with each newspaper we read.
- 1910, Saki [pseudonym; Hector Hugh Munro], “Blood-Feud of Toad-Water”, in Reginald in Russia and Other Sketches, London: Methuen & Co. […], →OCLC, page 35:
- From the shrill triumph with which his name was dragged in, his crime must have been pilfering from a cathedral at least, but as both remembrancers were speaking at once it was difficult to distinguish his infamy from the scandal which beclouded the memory of Mrs. Saunders’ brother’s wife’s mother—who may have been a regicide, and was certainly not a nice person as Mrs. Crick painted her.
cause to become obscure or muddled