ornamented with or largely composed of beads:
a beaded handbag.
a small, usually round object of glass, wood, stone, or the like with a hole through it, often strung with others of its kind in necklaces, rosaries, etc.

a necklace of beads:
You don’t have your beads on this evening.
a rosary.
Obsolete. devotions; prayers.

any small globular or cylindrical body.
a drop of liquid:
beads of moisture.
a bubble rising through effervescent liquid.
Usually, beads. a mass of such bubbles on the surface of a liquid.
the front sight of a rifle or gun.
a reinforced area of a rubber tire terminating the sidewall and fitting within the rim of a wheel.
Electricity. a glass, ceramic, or plastic insulator that contains and supports the inner conductor in a coaxial cable.
Chemistry. a globule of borax or some other flux, supported on a platinum wire, in which a small amount of some substance is heated in a flame as a test for its constituents.
Metallurgy. the rounded mass of refined metal obtained by cupellation.
Architecture, Furniture. a small molding having a convex circular section and, usually, a continuous cylindrical surface; astragal.
Welding. a continuous deposit of fused metal, either straight (stringer bead) or zigzag (weave bead)
to form or cause to form beads or a bead on.
to ornament with beads.
Carpentry. to form a bead on (a piece).
to form beads; form in beads or drops:
perspiration beading on his forehead.
count / say / tell one’s beads, to say one’s prayers, using rosary beads:
There were a few old women counting their beads in the hushed silence of the chapel.
draw / get a bead on, to take careful aim at:
The marksman drew a bead on his target.
Contemporary Examples

Some featured products, like beaded bracelets and pillow shams, evoke the Italy-India-Bali theme of the story.
Inside the Eat Pray Love Merchandising Machine Lauren Streib August 16, 2010

The crown jewel of the collection is a ballgown of tulle with a beaded bodice.
New York Fashion Week: Backstage at Marchesa Isabel Wilkinson, Kevin Tachman February 16, 2011

In another, she wears a white dress and a beaded necklace while holding an American flag.
Candy Magazine Portrays Transgender Model As Michelle Obama Isabel Wilkinson December 17, 2012

There were four beaded black looks, with strong metal belts.
All Hail, McQueen! Isabel Wilkinson March 4, 2013

Historical Examples

At Rand’s glance he rose, took up the gun, and slid the pipe into his beaded pouch.
Lewis Rand Mary Johnston

Perlate: beaded: bearing relieved, rounded points in series.
Explanation of Terms Used in Entomology John. B. Smith

In truth, the veteran was pale around the mouth and his broad face was beaded with cold drops.
The Pathless Trail Arthur O. (Arthur Olney) Friel

“Frank Orono,” said one, patting his hand on his beaded breast.
Joan of Arc of the North Woods Holman Day

Out on the steps, a small boy with a beaded bag in his hand was ringing the doorbell.
The Amazing Inheritance Frances R. Sterrett

She drew a card from the beaded reticule that hung at her side.
Grace Harlowe’s Plebe Year at High School Jessie Graham Flower

a small usually spherical piece of glass, wood, plastic, etc, with a hole through it by means of which it may be strung with others to form a necklace, etc
a small drop of moisture: a bead of sweat
a small bubble in or on a liquid
a small metallic knob acting as the sight of a firearm
draw a bead on, to aim a rifle or pistol at
(architect, carpentry) Also called astragal. a small convex moulding having a semicircular cross section
(chem) a small solid globule made by fusing a powdered sample with borax or a similar flux on a platinum wire. The colour of the globule serves as a test for the presence of certain metals (bead test)
(metallurgy) a deposit of welding metal on the surface of a metal workpiece, often used to examine the structure of the weld zone
(RC Church) one of the beads of a rosary
count one’s beads, say one’s beads, tell one’s beads, to pray with a rosary
(transitive) to decorate with beads
to form into beads or drops

mid-14c., bede “prayer bead,” from Old English gebed “prayer,” with intensive or collective prefix *ge- + Proto-Germanic *bidjan “to pray, entreat” (cf. Middle Dutch bede, Old High German beta, German bitte, Gothic bida “prayer, request”), from PIE *gwhedh- “to ask, pray.” Shift in meaning came via beads threaded on a string to count prayers, and in phrases like to bid one’s beads, to count one’s beads. German cognate Bitte is the usual word for conversational request “please.” Also related to bid (Old English biddan) and Gothic bidjan “to ask, pray.” Sense transferred to “drop of liquid” 1590s; to “small knob forming front sight of a gun” 1831 (Kentucky slang); hence draw a bead on “take aim at,” 1841, U.S. colloquial.

1570s, “to adorn with beads,” from bead (n.). Meaning “to string like beads” is from 1883. Related: Beaded; beading.

beaded bead·ed (bē’dĭd)

Having numerous small rounded projections often in a row.

Relating to, or being a series of noncontinuous bacterial colonies along the line of inoculation in a stab culture.

Of, relating to, or being stained bacteria that have more deeply stained granules occurring at regular intervals.


: a ballyhoo expert


Advertising or publicity, esp of a raucous and colorful sort; flack, hype: to peddle a product with sheer ballyhoo


: They ballyhooed him right into office

[1908+; ”a short sample of a sideshow, presented with a barker’s spiel”]
see: draw a bead on


Read Also:

  • Beadblast

    noun a jet of small glass beads blown from a nozzle under air or steam pressure verb (transitive) to clean or treat (a surface) with a beadblast

  • Beaded hair

    beaded hair beaded hair n. See monilethrix.

  • Beader

    a tool for forming beads on lumber. Historical Examples Then examine the calked flues carefully, and if you see any seeping of water, use your beader lightly till the water stops. Farm Engines and How to Run Them James H. Stephenson

  • Beady

    beadlike; small, globular, and glittering: beady eyes. covered with or full of beads. Contemporary Examples He agreed, and I could almost feel his beady little eyes going ‘KERCHING!’ How Susan Boyle Won My Heart Piers Morgan April 15, 2009 Historical Examples A crow is cawing in a tree, and looks with beady eyes below. McClure’s […]

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