Definitions

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

  • n. A marriage ceremony; a wedding.
  • adj. Of or relating to a bride or a marriage ceremony; nuptial.
  • adj. Designed for a bride or a newly married couple: a bridal shop; the hotel's bridal suite.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of or pertaining to a bride, or to wedding; nuptial; as, bridal ornaments; a bridal outfit; a bridal chamber.
  • n. A wedding.
  • n. A wedding feast.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to a bride, or to wedding; nuptial.
  • n. A nuptial festival or ceremony; a marriage.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A feast at a marriage; a wedding-feast.
  • n. A marriage; nuptials.
  • Belonging to a bride or to a wedding: as, a bridal wreath.

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

  • adj. of or pertaining to a bride
  • adj. of or relating to a wedding
  • n. archaic terms for a wedding or wedding feast

Etymologies

Middle English bridale, wedding, wedding feast, from Old English brȳdealo : brȳd, bride; see bride + ealu, ale; see ale.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
bef. 1100; ME bridale wedding feast, OE brȳdealu, equiv. to brȳd bride + ealu ale, i.e., ale-drinking; now taken as bride + -al (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The old du Lac aunts at Rhinebeck had put their house at the disposal of the bridal couple, with a readiness inspired by the prospect of spending a week in New York with Mrs. Archer; and Archer, glad to escape the usual “bridal suite” in a Philadelphia or Baltimore hotel, had accepted with an equal alacrity.

    XIX. Book II

  • Nearly every season I note what I call the bridal day of summer -- a white, lucid, shining day, with a delicate veil of mist softening all outlines.

    The Wit of a Duck and Other Papers

  • I could recover myself into any composure for thinking, the maid came in with her mistress's service, and a small silver orringer of what she called a bridal posset, and desired me to eat it as I went to bed, which consequently I did, and felt immediately a heat, a fire run like a hue-and-cry through every part of my body; I burnt, I glowed, and wanted even little of wishing for any man.

    Memoirs Of Fanny Hill A New and Genuine Edition from the Original Text (London, 1749)

  • Now we've added all camo gowns and dresses, made in bridal satin and in 4 patterns ... and girls LOVE them!

    Camo Weddings

  • Weddings are sometimes considered as golden opportunities to showcase the best trends and the latest fads in bridal couture and wedding fashions.

    SciFi, Fantasy & Horror Collectibles - Part 12

  • It appeared that there was a disproportionate number of straight girls (often in bridal parties) bringing in uncomfortable boyfriends who didn't always get along well with the gay clientele.

    Gay 90's: Sold

  • What happened in bridal, with the shift online, is happening in all media, only quicker.

    Milking the old cash cow « BuzzMachine

  • One sees all the fruit-trees clad in bridal garments of pink and white; and what a translucent sky smiles down on the ponds and the reaches of bay and cove!

    Further Chronicles of Avonlea

  • But she stood, dressed in bridal wreath and crown, and took him by the hand and led him into the drawing-room, where the guests were assembled and all was in readiness for the ceremony.

    The Girl from the Marsh Croft

  • So beautiful the narrow road all the way, bordered by the lovely Shad-bush in bridal white, the delicate red Cherry with flowers so like Hawthorn as to be frequently mistaken for it, the pink Chokecherry, the common Wild Cherry (which seems to attract to itself most of the caterpillars in the land), all blossoming for dear life, and among thickets of Blackberry, Rasp -

    An Island Garden

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