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Uncertain. Perhaps from Middle English *bleighte, *bleȝte, from Old English blǣcþa (leprosy) (related to Old English blǣċo (paleness, leprosy) and blǣċe (an itching skin-disease)); or from Old Norse blikna (to grow pallid).[1] Related to bleak.



blight (countable and uncountable, plural blights)

English Wikipedia has an article on:
  1. (phytopathology) Any of many plant diseases causing damage to, or the death of, leaves, fruit or other parts.
  2. The bacterium, virus or fungus that causes such a condition.
  3. (by extension) Anything that impedes growth or development or spoils any other aspect of life.

Derived terms[edit]


Derived terms[edit]



blight (third-person singular simple present blights, present participle blighting, simple past and past participle blighted)

  1. (transitive) To affect with blight; to blast; to prevent the growth and fertility of.
    • (Can we date this quote by Woodward and provide title, author’s full name, and other details?)
      [This vapour] blasts vegetables, blights corn and fruit, and is sometimes injurious even to man.
  2. (intransitive) To suffer blight.
    This vine never blights.
  3. (transitive) To spoil or ruin (something).
    Those obscene tattoos are going to blight your job prospects.
    • 1814, Lord Byron, The Corsair
      that lone and blighted bosom sears
    • 1869 May, Anthony Trollope, “Lady Milborough as Ambassador”, in He Knew He Was Right, volume I, London: Strahan and Company, publishers, [], OCLC 1118026626, page 81:
      I need hardly explain to you that if you persist in this refusal you and I cannot continue to live together as man and wife. All my hopes and prospects in life will be blighted by such a separation.

Derived terms[edit]



  1. ^ blight” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2020.