Definitions

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

  • n. A coarsely knitted, stretchable jersey fabric.
  • n. A pair of tights or a leotard of such fabric, worn for ballet or gymnastics.
  • n. A woman's one-piece swimsuit usually cut high on the leg.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A one-piece swimsuit (for women)
  • n. A leotard or tights of stretchable, jersey fabric, generally worn by dancers and gymnasts.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A woman's one-piece bathing suit.
  • n. for dancers or gymnasts.

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

  • n. a woman's one-piece bathing suit
  • n. tights for dancers or gymnasts

Etymologies

French, from Old French, swaddling clothes, from maille, mesh, from Latin macula.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French maillotĀ ("shirt, leotard"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • In France in the 20s, the word maillot, possibly based on the name of the costumier of the Paris Opera, described a tight-fitting bathing costume.

    No Uncertain Terms

  • The drawings are remarkable for the pose -- that of the left-hand resembling an attitude assumed in boxing, whilst the dress -- a kind of maillot or "tights" -- is gripped round the waist by a firm ring (like a table-napkin ring), the compression of which is no doubt exaggerated.

    More Science From an Easy Chair

  • And now I bid you good-night, as I have to be up before the day -- so many things to buy and settle and arrange -- first of all to procure myself a 'maillot' and a 'peignoir,' and shoes for the beach!

    The Martian

  • The micro-mini white cover-up she had donned over her bathing suit was removed without circumstance, revealing a shimmering gold maillot that dipped very low in back and was accented by sheer finely-woven gold mesh across the waistline in front.

    Who Said It Would Be Easy

  • BOULDER, Colorado VN - The maillot jaune of the Tour de France will feature on the roads of Colorado next month when Cadel Evans starts the USA Pro Cycling Challenge.

    Cadel Evans confirmed for Colorado stage race

  • For ten stages, the 32-year-old French rider riveted his country by sitting atop the race, defending the maillot jaune with a grit that recalled gaunt-cheeked, vintage champions.

    A Tour That Was Hard to Ignore

  • The Australian assured victory yesterday by leapfrogging Luxembourg's Schleck brothers, Andy and Frank, to seize the maillot jaune at the end of one of the most gripping Tours in recent history.

    Cadel Evans blazes ahead to become first Australian Tour de France winner

  • The reigning world champion has had a strong 2011, topped by an amazing Tour de France during which the multiple stage winner was a part-time bearer of the maillot jaune and a full-time badass.

    The Livestream Diaries: Vaughters drops the Hammer

  • Whatever happens Friday on the Alpe d'Huez, another iconic Tour de France summit, or the time trial in Grenoble Saturday, Voeckler's little romp in the maillot jaune supports a narrative that the whole country is rushing to embrace.

    The Sound of Frenchmen Gloating

  • Instead, the big names have been men like Voeckler and Sandy Casar, who became famous for their daring and quixotic breakaways and the few fleeting days they would wear the maillot jaune before inevitably handing it over.

    The Sound of Frenchmen Gloating

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Comments

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  • I never see this word without thinking of the Land's End catalog, where I first learned it.

    March 22, 2008