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

  • n. A small secluded wooded valley.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. valley
  • n. A young woman; a wench.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A small, retired valley; a ravine.
  • n. A young woman; a wench.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A small valley between hills; a little dale; a glen; a ravine.
  • n. A young girl; a wench.

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

  • n. a small wooded hollow


Middle English del, from Old English dell.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English delle, from Old English *dell (“small dale”), from Proto-Germanic *daljō (“a hollow, abyss”), diminutive of Proto-Germanic *dalan (“valley, dale”), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰol-, *dʰel- (“an arch, vaulting, curve, curvature, cavity”). Cognate with Dutch del ("a dell"), German dialectal Telle ("a hollow"). (Wiktionary)



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • There is a lovely little park in the Charles Village neighborhood of Baltimore, in front of the art museum, which has been known for decades simply as the Dell. It's a favorite of sun-bathers and dog-walkers, as well as being the site of various festivals. This word conjures very pleasant memories for me.

    December 7, 2007