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From Middle English clod, clodde, cludde, from Old English clod, clodd (attested in compounds and placenames), from Proto-Germanic *klut-, *klūtaz (mass, ball, clump), related to clot and cloud. Cognate to Dutch klodde (rag) and kloot (clod).



clod (plural clods)

  1. A lump of something, especially of earth or clay.
    • (Can we date this quote?) John Milton
      clods of iron and brass
    • (Can we date this quote?) E. Fairfax
      clods of blood
    • (Can we date this quote?) Francis Bacon
      The earth that casteth up from the plough a great clod, is not so good as that which casteth up a smaller clod.
    • (Can we date this quote?) T. Burnet
      this cold clod of clay which we carry about with us
    • (Can we date this quote?) Mark Twain, Eve's Diary
      One of the clods took it back of the ear, and it used language. It gave me a thrill, for it was the first time I had ever heard speech, except my own.
    • 2010, Clare Vanderpool, Moon Over Manifest
      "What a bunch of hooey," I said under my breath, tossing a dirt clod over my shoulder against the locked-up garden shed.
  2. The ground; the earth; a spot of earth or turf.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Jonathan Swift
      the clod where once their sultan's horse has trod
  3. A stupid person; a dolt.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of John Dryden to this entry?)
    • 1998, "Chickenpox" (episode of South Park TV series)
      Gerald Broflovski: You see Kyle, we humans work as a society, and in order for a society to thrive, we need gods and clods.
    • 2015, "Jail Break" (episode of Steven Universe TV series)
      Peridot: Don't touch that! You clods don't know what you're doing!
  4. Part of a shoulder of beef, or of the neck piece near the shoulder.



clod (third-person singular simple present clods, present participle clodding, simple past and past participle clodded)

  1. (transitive) To pelt with clods.
    Mark Twain : "Eve's Diary"
    "When I went there yesterday evening in the gloaming it had crept down and was trying to catch the little speckled fishes that play in the pool, and I had to clod it to make it go up the tree again and let them alone."
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Jonson to this entry?)
  2. (transitive, Scotland) To throw violently; to hurl.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Walter Scott to this entry?)
  3. To collect into clods, or into a thick mass; to coagulate; to clot.
    • G. Fletcher
      Clodded in lumps of clay.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for clod in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)