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portmanteau Syllabification: port·man·teau
Pronunciation: /ˌpôrtˈman(t)ō/

Definition of portmanteau in English:

noun (plural portmanteaus-tōz or portmanteaux-tōz)

1A large trunk or suitcase, typically made of stiff leather and opening into two equal parts.
Example sentences
  • Luggage labels are those elegant, postcardlike stickers that first adorned the portmanteaus of the well traveled back in the late 19th century.
  • One they'd reached the carriage, the portmanteaux were tied in place, civil goodbyes were said between the royal family and the Davis girls, and the women stepped inside their carriage.
  • Sancho Panza thinks they had better bring the two portmanteaus back to Ireland as quietly as possible.
2 (also portmanteau word) A word blending the sounds and combining the meanings of two others, for example motel (from ‘motor’ and ‘hotel’) or brunch (from ‘breakfast’ and ‘lunch’): podcast is a portmanteau, a made-up word coined from a combination of the words iPod and broadcast a portmanteau word combining smoke and fog
[Coined in this sense by Lewis Carroll in Through the Looking Glass (1871)]
2.1 [as modifier] Consisting of or combining two or more aspects or qualities: a portmanteau movie composed of excerpts from his most famous films
More example sentences
  • There is a conscious, even contrived lack of consequence to this Argentinian portmanteau movie using non-professionals, about three individuals making their vulnerable way across Patagonia.
  • This portmanteau movie is a companion piece to the one that appeared here in September.
  • Shot on digital video, this juxtaposes the lives of three women in a portmanteau movie which arguably goes about its business with less fuss than The Hours.


Mid 16th century: from French portemanteau, from porter 'carry' + manteau 'mantle'.

Words that rhyme with portmanteau

canto, Esperanto, manteau, panto
Definition of portmanteau in:
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