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[bluhd-let-ing] /ˈblʌdˌlɛt ɪŋ/
the act or practice of letting blood by opening a vein; phlebotomy.
bloodshed or slaughter.
Informal. severe cutbacks or reduction in personnel, appropriations, etc.:
The company went through a period of bloodletting in the 1970s.
1175-1225; Middle English blod letunge. See blood, let1, -ing1
Related forms
bloodletter, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for bloodletting
  • The first printed anatomical text, it covered dissection and other topics such as bloodletting and urinoscopy.
  • And the quickest way to remedy was the imbalance was through bloodletting.
  • It seems keener on blood transfusions than on bloodletting.
  • But whether his moves are the answer to the bloodletting, and to the eight-month labour dispute behind it, is another matter.
  • The bombs ignited an unprecedented spate of sectarian bloodletting.
  • The bloodletting it unleashed has undermined any moral case anyway.
  • Our people hatred of bloodletting and military rule.
  • About a year earlier, she had been let go from a big advertising firm as part of what she calls a general bloodletting.
  • The sacrificial bloodletting is accompanied by the offering of a fish to represent the watery underworld.
  • The corpses are piling up, the mood is dark and foreboding, and the evidence of bloodletting is everywhere.
Word Origin and History for bloodletting
early 13c., blod letunge, from blood + let. Hyphenated from 17c., one word from mid-19c.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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bloodletting in Medicine

bloodletting blood·let·ting (blŭd'lět'ĭng)
The theropeutic removal of blood, usually from a vein.

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