Make One’s Blood Run Cold

Also:
Freeze one’s blood
Turn one’s blood to ice

Meaning Of Idiom ‘Make One’s Blood Run Cold’

When something makes your blood run cold it fills you with great fear or horror. 1Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.,2Ayto, John. Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms. Oxford: Oxford U, 2010.,3Pare, May. Body Idioms and More: For Learners of English. United States?: Mayuree Pare, 2005.

Usage

This idiom is often used interchangeably with the related idiom make one’s blood curdle.

Examples Of Use

“When the detective saw the gruesome murder scene, it made his blood run cold.”

“They showed us horrible pictures of concentration camps today in class. They really turned my blood to ice.”

“If the thought of children being harmed doesn’t freeze your blood, then there is something seriously wrong with you.”

“Last night I walked past an alley and someone stepped out of the shadows and came right at me. I tell you it made my blood freeze in my veins. The guy walked right past me though.”

Origin

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms, this idiom is based on the Medieval idea of the four humours of the body, melancholy, phlegm, blood, and choler. Blood was known as the hot and moist element and when horror or fear made the blood cold, it was unable to fulfill its function of supplying the body with vital heat or energy. 4Ayto, John. Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms. Oxford: Oxford U, 2010. The expression has only been used since the early 1800’s, however. 5Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.

More Idioms Starting with M

More Body Part Idioms

More Blood Idioms

More Cold Idioms

More Make Idioms

More Run Idioms

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Sources   [ + ]

1, 5. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
2, 4. Ayto, John. Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms. Oxford: Oxford U, 2010.
3. Pare, May. Body Idioms and More: For Learners of English. United States?: Mayuree Pare, 2005.