grey


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to grey: greyhound

get gray hair from (someone or something)

To be exceedingly worried, stressed, or upset by or about something or someone. I'm getting gray hair from these kids screaming all day long. I'm going to get gray hair from my teenage daughter and all her wild behavior. I'm going to get gray hair from dealing with this stupid car breaking down all the time!
See also: get, gray, hair

the grey pound

The economic purchasing power of elderly people as a group. Primarily heard in UK. As the baby-boom generation enters old age, many different markets are trying to capitalize on the burgeoning influence of the grey pound.
See also: grey, pound

the gray dollar

The economic purchasing power of elderly people as a group. Primarily heard in US. As the baby-boom generation enters old age, many different markets are trying to capitalize on the burgeoning influence of the gray dollar.
See also: dollar, gray

all cats are grey at night

In the dark of night, appearances do not matter (because it is so difficult to see anything). A: "I can't believe you're going on a date with someone you've never met before! What if you don't think he's attractive?" B: "Ah, all cats are grey at night, so it will be fine."
See also: all, cat, grey, night

all cats are grey by night

In the dark of night, appearances do not matter (because it is so difficult to see anything). A: "I can't believe you're going on a date with someone you've never met before! What if you don't think he's attractive?" B: "Ah, all cats are grey by night, so it will be fine."
See also: all, cat, grey, night

grey area

A concept or topic that is not clearly defined or that exists somewhere between two extreme positions. Primarily heard in Australia. There's a large grey area regarding whether the use of the new surveillance technology is lawful.
See also: area, grey

grey amber

Another term for ambergris, a waxy substance excreted by sperm whales and used as a fixative, especially in the preparation of perfumes. The large chunk of grey amber that washed ashore is worth more than gold!
See also: amber, grey

grey power

The influence exerted by the elderly people in an organization, community, etc. When I decided to run for office, I knew that grey power would be an important factor in the election and that I needed to rally support from the elderly.
See also: grey, power

a grey area

  (British & Australian) also a gray area (American)
a subject or problem that people do not know how to deal with because there are no clear rules The legal difference between negligence and recklessness is a bit of a grey area.
See also: area, grey

grey matter

  (British & Australian humorous) also gray matter (American humorous)
your intelligence It's an entertaining film but it doesn't exactly stimulate the old grey matter.
See also: grey, matter

the men in grey suits

men in business or politics who have a lot of power and influence although the public does not see them or know about them As usual, it is the men in grey suits who will decide the future of the industry.
See also: grey, men, suit

get gray hair from

Be very worried or upset by. For example, I know I'm going to get gray hair from his driving. Similarly, give gray hair to means "to worry someone," as in The boy's love of rock climbing gave his parents gray hair. This idiom alludes to the notion that extreme anxiety or grief can cause one's hair to turn gray. [Early 1600s]
See also: get, gray, hair
References in classic literature ?
But in the course of the evening I had rambled down to the door, and a little way along the street, that I might have another peep at the old houses, and the grey Cathedral; and might think of my coming through that old city on my journey, and of my passing the very house I lived in, without knowing it.
I turned and saw the passage behind me blocked by another heavy brute, with a huge grey face and twinkling little eyes, advancing towards me.
Always his mind would wander back to the little, black-haired ghost that sat on the table, smiling at him, and questioning him with its grey eyes.
Outside, the blackness changed to grey, and the grey to white.
Henry made no reply, and plodded on alone, though often he cast anxious glances back into the grey solitude where his partner had disappeared.
The dominant colour was grey, and yet there was to it a faint reddish hue--a hue that was baffling, that appeared and disappeared, that was more like an illusion of the vision, now grey, distinctly grey, and again giving hints and glints of a vague redness of colour not classifiable in terms of ordinary experience.
All donkeys love big words, so it is no wonder the grey one used so many of them.
It was the steward, who had come in carrying a tin coffee-pot with a long handle, and stood quietly by: a man with a middle-aged, sallow face, long features, heavy eyelids, a soldierly grey moustache.
He had noticed across the skylight a head in a grey cap.
The eyes themselves were of that baffling protean grey which is never twice the same; which runs through many shades and colourings like intershot silk in sunshine; which is grey, dark and light, and greenish-grey, and sometimes of the clear azure of the deep sea.
The sea had turned a dull leaden grey and grown rougher, and was now tossing foaming whitecaps to the sky.
Its solid grey stone walls were sea-stained and a trifle worn, but the arched wooden doors leading into the lifeboat shelter, which occupied one side of the building, had been newly painted, and in the front the window was hung with a curtain, now closely drawn, of some dark red material.
The girl with the grey eyes was right enough," he remarked to himself.
There are swift-flowing rivers which dash through jagged canons; and there are enormous plains, which in winter are white with snow, and in summer are grey with the saline alkali dust.
There is no bird in the steel-blue heaven, no movement upon the dull, grey earth -- above all, there is absolute silence.