Definitions

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

  • n. A coarse stiff fabric of cotton or horsehair used especially to line and stiffen hats and garments.
  • n. A petticoat made of this fabric.
  • n. A hoop skirt.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A stiff fabric made from cotton and horsehair
  • n. A stiff petticoat made from this fabric
  • n. A skirt stiffened with hoops

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A kind of stiff cloth, used chiefly by women, for underskirts, to expand the gown worn over it; -- so called because originally made of hair.
  • n. A lady's skirt made of any stiff material; latterly, a hoop skirt.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A stiff material originally made wholly or in part of horsehair, whence the name.
  • n. Hence A skirt made of this stuff or of any stiffened or starched material.
  • n. A framework of fine steel or other hoops or springs, used for distending the dress; a hoop-skirt. See farthingale and hoop-skirt.
  • Pertaining to or resembling a crinoline in structure.
  • n. A contrivance worn by divers in deep water to enable them to breathe more freely. It is placed round the body and tied in front of the stomach.

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

  • n. a full stiff petticoat made of crinoline fabric
  • n. a stiff coarse fabric used to stiffen hats or clothing
  • n. a skirt stiffened with hoops

Etymologies

French, from Italian crinolino : crino, horsehair (from Latin crīnis, hair; see sker-2 in Indo-European roots) + lino, flax (from Latin līnum; see librevema.gifno- in Indo-European roots).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • The woman, as she enters, drags after her a misshapen, dirty mass of battered wirework, which she calls her crinoline, and which adds as much to her grace and comfort as a log of wood does to a donkey when tied to the animal's leg in a paddock.

    North America — Volume 1

  • A respectable elderly woman stooping forward, invested in crinoline, exposes quite as much of her own person to the patient lying in the room as any opera dancer does on the stage.

    Notes on Nursing: What It Is, and What It Is Not

  • The woman, as she enters, drags after her a misshapen, dirty mass of battered wirework, which she calls her crinoline, and which adds as much to her grace and comfort as a log of wood does to a donkey when tied to the animal’s leg in a paddock.

    North America

  • They are in sympathy with all that is bright and beautiful in the heavens above, and in the earth beneath; and it has even been suspected that the only reason why they ever assume that invisible round-about called crinoline is that, like the moon, they may move in a circle.

    Moon Lore

  • "Every iron-clad is provided with a crinoline, which is a powerful iron network, hung all round the ship at some distance from her, like -- pardon me -- a lady's crinoline, and is intended to intercept any torpedo that may be discharged against her."

    In the Track of the Troops

  • Obviously the purse is a bit heavy on the butterfly and rose for me, not exactly going to get all dolled up in my goth loli with my black lace bonnet, high skirt with tonnes of lace and crinoline which is what I think this purse was meant to go with.

    I pursue taboo love, reasons to wear corsets and girls with knives

  • The ship was to carry a "crinoline" of stanchions along her water-line, practically a fixed torpedo-net.

    The Illustrated War News, Number 21, Dec. 30, 1914

  • Then the "crinoline" was drawn on, but it added no feminine sharpness to his wits, though it seriously modified and damaged the shape of his person.

    Under the Waves Diving in Deep Waters

  • Sometimes a "crinoline" to afford protection to the stomach in deep water is put on, but on the present occasion it was omitted, the water being shallow.

    Under the Waves Diving in Deep Waters

  • Costelloe presented a strong collection which featured short, "crinoline" skirts over stiff, canvas petticoats, in tweed and silk jacquard; blouses and dresses with leg-o-mutton sleeves; and finely-tailored riding-jackets and coats.

    Telegraph.co.uk: news, business, sport, the Daily Telegraph newspaper, Sunday Telegraph

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