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8 Words That Are Older Than You Think

bill of health

noun
1.
a certificate, carried by a ship, attesting to the presence or absence of infectious diseases among the ship's crew and at the port from which it has come.
Idioms
2.
clean bill of health, an attestation of fitness or qualification; a commendation:
The investigating committee gave him a clean bill of health.
Origin
1635-1645
1635-45
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for bill of health
  • Researchers don't know what fetal cells are doing in tumors, but they aren't prepared to give the cells a clean bill of health.
  • Foreign observers are expected to give the vote a clean bill of health.
  • More padding-in the form of cash in the bank-will be necessary to secure a clean bill of health.
  • There could be a big shift if one of these were to be given a clean bill of health.
  • As such it could be expected to give the lab a clean bill of health.
  • Hopefully, he has a clean bill of health and returns to form.
  • With a clean bill of health, keepers gave her free reign of the lion exhibit.
  • All results were negative and the fish were given a clean bill of health.
  • There, both birds were given a clean bill of health.
British Dictionary definitions for bill of health

bill of health

noun
1.
a certificate, issued by a port officer, that attests to the health of a ship's company
2.
(informal) clean bill of health
  1. a good report of one's physical condition
  2. a favourable account of a person's or a company's financial position
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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bill of health in Medicine

bill of health n.

  1. A certificate stating whether there is infectious disease aboard a ship or in a port of departure, given to the ship's master to present at the next port of arrival.

  2. An attestation as to condition, especially a favorable one.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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