Definition of belfry in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈbɛlfri/

noun (plural belfries)

1The part of a bell tower or steeple in which bells are housed.
Example sentences
  • Constant ringing for 230 years had taken its toll on the belfry and bells.
  • I entered this gigantic granite jewel, which is as light in its effect as a bit of lace and is covered with towers, with slender belfries to which spiral staircases ascend.
  • I imagined we would be going to some creepy old house with bats in the belfry and stone gremlins on the gateposts.
1.1A bell tower or steeple housing bells.
Example sentences
  • The palace chapel had porcelain bells in the wooden belfry and large porcelain figures of the apostles.
  • The belfry and short spire were added about 1200.
  • The last rang in my ears like a bell's dying toll from a belfry.


Middle English berfrey, from Old French berfrei, later belfrei, of West Germanic origin. The change in the first syllable was due to association with bell1.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: bel¦fry

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.