claret

Definitions

Slang

  • noun blood. Originally an upper-class theatrical and boxing euphemism, this word is now heard mainly in London police and underworld circles.

Wine

  • an English term for a red wine produced in the Bordeaux region of France. Originally it referred to light red wines, but now it is often used as a generic label for a full-bodied red wine made in the style of the Bordeaux region.

Origin & History of “claret”

Claret was originally a ‘light-coloured wine’ – pale red (virtually what we would now call rosé), but also apparently yellowish. The word comes ultimately from Latin clārus ‘clear’; from this was derived the verb clārāre, whose past participle was used in the phrase vīnum clārātum ‘clarified wine’. This passed into Old French as vin claret. modern French clairet preserves the word’s early sense ‘pale wine, rosé’, but in English by the later 17th century seems to have been transferred to red wine, and since in those days the vast majority of red wine imported into Britain came from Southwest France, and Bordeaux in particular, it was not long before claret came to mean specifically ‘red Bordeaux’.
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