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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Abed \A*bed"\, adv. [Pref. a- in, on + bed.]

  1. In bed, or on the bed.

    Not to be abed after midnight.

  2. To childbed (in the phrase ``brought abed,'' that is, delivered of a child).

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English on bedde "in bed," from a- (1) + bed (n.). As one word from 17c.


adv. In bed, or on the bed; confined to bed. (First attested from 1150 to 1350.)(R:SOED5: page=3)


adv. in bed

Usage examples of "abed".

As it transpired, Micheline de Parnasse was abed that day with an ague in the joints, and I spoke to her assistant instead, the Siovalese lordling.

Lying abed, Mr Bittering felt his bones shifted, shaped, melted like gold.

And because Blanche must pretend to be keeping you abed when you are gone from this place so that no one will ever know you were gone.

On the long artificial lake, with innumerable rushy nooks and water-lilies and coverture of leaves floating flat and bright in the sun, the halftame wild duck and shy water-hens had remote little worlds, and flew and splashed when all Becket was abed, quite as if the human spirit, with its monkey-tricks and its little divine flame, had not yet been born.

Polly would have been astonished to learn that a lone visitor called at Dilling ham Court that night, long after she was abed.

Once he was safely abed and snoring, Karigan sought out the mender, Ben.

Rat Island hut with two vermin-live Siwashes, sleeping three abed because their blankets were too few for division.

Later, with our furs hanging from the drying racks, as we lay abed sipping our last mugs of coffee, Soli would read to me from the Book of Silence.

In all her time on the Jackdaw, Elizabeth realized, she had never seen Mac Stoker off his feet, but now he was abed.

He dropped the playscript on the sideboard, weighted it with the bribe, locked the door behind him, and went to tell the clerkthe cousin, he said, of the usual boy, who was abed with an aguethat he could go.

Donnyn Shalach was a strange place without the leadership of its mistress, but her all-pervasive influence was not entirely absent, and her all-conquering will saw her rise and return with contempt for her enforced idleness after a scanty three days abed.

Roknari war hammer during the final assault on the fortress, and was much abed this wintera mess of broken ribs, with inflammation of the lungs to follow.

Perkins have but now exchanged congratulations on the children being abed, and they still linger on a door-step over a few parting words.

Piper and Mrs. Perkins have but now exchanged congratulations on the children being abed, and they still linger on a door-step over a few parting words.

And therewithal I pulled out a piece of the rope wherewith the bed was corded, and tyed one end thereof about a rafter by the window, and with the other end I made a sliding knot, and stood upon my bed, and so put my neck into it, and leaped from the bed, thinking to strangle my selfe and so dye, behold the rope beeing old and rotten burst in the middle, and I fell down tumbling upon Socrates that lay under : And even at that same very time the Hostler came in crying with a loud voyce, and sayd, Where are you that made such hast at midnight, and now lies wallowing abed?