bedhead

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See also: bed head

English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From bed +‎ head.

Noun[edit]

bedhead (countable and uncountable, plural bedheads)

  1. The condition of having unkempt hair, generally as a result of having just woken up from sleep.
  2. (Britain) A vertical panel or board at the end of a bed where the pillow is placed.
    • 1772, Anonymous, A True and Genuine Account of the Life, Trial, and Execution of James Bolland, London: self-published, p. 2, [2]
      [] upon this he went up stairs in his shirt, and found the boy hanging in his belt to the staple within the bed-head, and no higher than would admit him to be on his knees, having only his shirt on.
    • 1949, George Orwell, chapter 4, in Nineteen Eighty-Four[3]:
      Feeling slightly ashamed of himself, he sat up against the bedhead.
    • 1977, Edna O'Brien, Johnny I Hardly Knew You, Penguin, 1984, p. 82,
      There was a big black wrought-iron double bed, with a mosaic in the centre of the bedhead.
    • 2014, Christine Kenneally, The Invisible History of the Human Race: How DNA and History Shape Our Identities and Our Futures, New York: Viking, Chapter 8,
      A few miles from Skara Brae, you can see hearths, bedheads, and milk crate-style shelving in a cluster of stone houses that are joined by an internal corridor, like those of an apartment block. The houses are five thousand years old, older than the Egyptian pyramids.
  3. The end of a bed where the pillow is placed, the head of the bed.
    • 1841, Samuel Warren, Ten Thousand a-Year, Boston: Little & Brown, 1900, Vol. III, Chapter, VIII, p. 342, [4]
      Miss Macspleuchan, with a faint shriek, rang the bell at the bed-head violently; but before she or any one else could reach her, Lady Cecilia had fallen heavily on the floor, where she lay unconsciously, her maid falling down over her as she rushed into the room, alarmed by the sudden and violent ringing of the bell.
    • 1940, Sinclair Lewis, Bethel Merriday, London: Jonathan Cape, Chapter XXXIII, p. 364,
      She turned off the bed-head light in this tiny, low-ceiled rolling home of hers, raised the curtain and watched the specks of light streak by.

Synonyms[edit]