Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A violent snowstorm with winds blowing at a minimum speed of 35 miles (56 kilometers) per hour and visibility of less than one-quarter mile (400 meters) for three hours.
  • n. A very heavy snowstorm with high winds.
  • n. A torrent; a superabundance: a blizzard of phone calls.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A severe snowstorm, especially with strong winds and greatly reduced visibility.
  • n. A large amount of paperwork.
  • n. A large number of similar things, such as a blizzard of political ads.
  • v. To fall in windy conditions

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A gale of piercingly cold wind, usually accompanied with fine and blinding snow; a furious blast.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A general discharge of guns; a rattling volley; a general “blazing away.” See extract.
  • n. Hence—2. Figuratively, a volley; a sudden (oratorical) attack; an overwhelming retort.
  • n. 3. A gale or hurricane accompanied by intense cold and dry, driving snow, common in winter on the great plains of the States and Territories of the northwestern United States east of the Rocky Mountains, especially Dakota, and in Manitoba in British America.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a storm with widespread snowfall accompanied by strong winds
  • n. a series of unexpected and unpleasant occurrences

Etymologies

Perhaps of imitative origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Unknown (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • As we guard against the incursion of nonsense buzzwords, though, it's useful to note that the term blizzard also emerged as a breathless media response to a snowstorm sound familiar?

    The New Yorker

  • You get that for three hours and that's what we call a blizzard, my friend.

    CNN Transcript Feb 17, 2008

  • A spring blizzard is covering northcentral Montana, schools are closed which never happens – we pride ourselves on our ‘toughness’ – and I have a perfect day to stay home and daydream for a few extra minutes.

    la frangine - French Word-A-Day

  • Don't know about bovines in blizzard games, but gender neutral characters tend to be male-centric, and even though I myself use video games as a medium for escapism sometimes, I certainly do not want to be alienated from the experience ALL of the time, and not for reasons that are sexist.

    Heroine

  • When the novel opens, a 100-year blizzard is closing in on the farm, and Rose is the only thing standing between the cows, the sheep, the chickens and an icy death.

    Jon Katz's new dog-centered novel, 'Rose in a Storm'

  • I agree with leloup and Hwang, blizzard is famous for having ‘quality’ before ‘quantity’ as a company standard.

    EXTRALIFE – By Scott Johnson - Some things we know and don’t know about DIII

  • You know, those things I drag myself over red hot oozing lava and pointy steel blades uphill both ways in blizzard and howling tropical storm to create.

    More POV - and a reflection on how to take a compliment

  • A blizzard is roaring outside as I write this .... but that means only one thing - everything is CLOSED! and I mean everything!

    A blizzard and some Chimichangas.......

  • Around the golf course, a rounded number eight is referred to as a snowman, and in blizzard-like conditions better suited for the Iditarod sled-dog race, the Browns (9-5) didn't mind shooting that score.

    USATODAY.com

  • German settlers in Iowa originally coined the word blizzard, coming from the word blitzartig, meaning "lightning-like."

    Snow removal in the United States

Comments

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  • Amen, sister.

    July 2, 2009

  • Seen today in the New York Times:
    "When I was a child, it wasn’t unusual for my 15-minute walk home from school to begin under clear skies and end in a blizzard. I remember once, when I was 8 years old, stumbling into my house, my hair covered in powder and my eyelashes frozen together, and screaming, “Why do we live here?!�? My mother took my face in her warm hands and said, “Because it’s where people love you.�?

    At the time, that struck me as the lamest statement ever uttered by a human being. But today, as I sit under the California sun, it only strikes me as halfway lame, and maybe even less than that.

    — TIM LONG, a writer for “The Simpsons�?

    That struck me as the perfect answer.

    July 2, 2009

  • After reading WeirdNet 3, I am defining my one and only trip to Barcelona as a blizzard.

    March 2, 2009

  • So...technically, we could have a blizzard during a nasty windstorm at night in July?

    March 2, 2009

  • “I wouldn’t be surprised if there were gusts of 35 m.p.h.,�? he said, “We have to keep our eye out for blizzard conditions.�? The weather service defines a blizzard, not by the amount of snowfall — though they tend to be accompanied by significant snow — but by three consecutive hours of winds blowing at 35 m.p.h. and visibility of less than a mile.

    The New York Times, A Foot of Snow Is Predicted for New York City, by Emily S. Rueb, March 1, 2009

    March 2, 2009

  • Plath citations: see note at hibernaculum.

    April 6, 2008