Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A heavily embroidered or jeweled garment formerly worn over the chest and stomach, especially by women.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One who stomachs, in any sense of the word.
  • noun A stomachic; an appetizer.
  • noun A part of the dress covering the front of the body, generally forming the lower part of the bodice in front and usually projecting down into the skirt or lapping over it—the name being given to the whole front piece covering the pit of the stomach and the breast.
  • noun A plaque or brooch, usually large, the name being derived from that part of the dress upon which the brooch was worn.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun One who stomachs.
  • noun An ornamental covering for the breast, worn originally both by men and women. Those worn by women were often richly decorated.

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

  • noun garment consisting of a V-shaped panel of stiff material worn over the chest and stomach in the 16th century

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Apparently from stomach +‎ -er, perhaps after Middle French estomachier.

Examples

  • “And I,” said the youngest, “shall have my usual petticoat; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my gold-flowered manteau, and my diamond stomacher, which is far from being the most ordinary one in the world.”

    The Blue Fairy Book

  • "And I," said the youngest, "shall have my usual petticoat; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my gold-flowered manteau and my diamond stomacher, which is far from being the most ordinary one in the world."

    Cinderella; or, The Little Glass Slipper and Other Stories

  • "And I," said the younger, "shall wear my usual skirt; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my gold-flowered mantle, and my diamond stomacher, which is far from being the most ordinary one in the world."

    Types of Children's Literature

  • I don’t pretend that I like wearing an old underskirt, and I hope to make dear Papa sensible of this; but against it I shall have the gold-flowered robe, on which I am determined, and my diamond stomacher, which is somewhat better than the common.

    Cinderella or the little Glass Slipper.

  • "And I," said the youngest, "shall only have my usual petticoat; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my gold flowered manteau and my diamond stomacher, which is far from being the most ordinary one in the world."

    Children's Literature A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes

  • (I think this garment is called a stomacher, but I am not sure, as I have never liked to ask.)

    Diary of a Pilgrimage

  • "And I," said the youngest, "shall have my usual petticoat; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my gold-flowered manteau, and my diamond stomacher, which is far from being the most ordinary one in the world."

    Blue Fairy Book

  • "And I," said the youngest, "shall have my usual petticoat; but then, to make amends for that, I will put on my gold-flowered manteau, and my diamond stomacher, which is far from being the most ordinary one in the world."

    The Blue Fairy Book

  • And that center front piece in the bodice? that's a "stomacher".

    Diegogarcity, Fake Bolero Edition - A Dress A Day

  • (Oxford English Dictionary) [37.2] A stomacher was a part of a woman's dress and was "a long ornate panel forming the front of an open low-necked bodice.

    Inventory of Robert Carter's Estate, November [1733]

Comments

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  • "Her hands passing slowly over her trinketed stomacher.'

    Joyce, Ulysses, 15

    January 28, 2007

  • In the eighteenth century, a decorative piece for the center front of a woman's bodice. Did not always "match" the dress (and was not always intended to).

    August 26, 2008