out cold


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out cold

 and out like a light 
1. Fig. unconscious. I fell and hit my head. I was out cold for about a minute. Tom fainted! He's out like a light!
2. Fig. intoxicated. Four beers and he was out cold. He sat in his chair at the table, out cold.
3. Fig. sound asleep. After a few minutes of tossing and turning, she was out like a light.
See also: cold, out

out cold

Also, out for the count; out like a light. Unconscious; also, asleep. For example, He crashed into the wall and was out cold, or Willie punched him too hard, and he was out for the count or Don't call Jane; she's out like a light by ten every night. The adjective cold refers to the lack of heat in a dead body and has been used to mean "unconscious" since the second half of the 1800s. The first variant comes from boxing, where a fighter who is knocked down must get up before the referee counts to ten or be declared defeated; it dates from about 1930. The last variant alludes to turning out a light and dates from the first half of the 1900s.
See also: cold, out

out cold

1. mod. unconscious. Paul was out cold when we found him.
2. mod. alcohol intoxicated. He sat in his chair at the table, out cold.
See also: cold, out