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handkerchief

Line breaks: hand|ker¦chief
Pronunciation: /ˈhaŋkətʃɪf
 
/

Definition of handkerchief in English:

noun (plural handkerchiefs or handkerchieves /-tʃiːvz/)

A square of cotton or other finely woven material intended for wiping one’s nose.
Example sentences
  • He sits repeatedly wiping his nose on his handkerchief, and then spreading it out on his lap like a napkin.
  • I blew my nose in a napkin and blew my nose again on his handkerchief.
  • Now, however, he was too ill to notice it - how the people in the car began to gasp and sputter, to put handkerchiefs to their noses, and transfix him with furious glances.
Synonyms
pocket handkerchief;
tissue, paper handkerchief
trademark Kleenex
Scottish & Northern English napkin;
Frenchmouchoir;
Indian corah, Malabar, pullicate
informal hanky, nose rag, snot rag
informal , dated nose-wiper, sneezer, wipe, wiper
literary kerchief
archaic clout, muckender, monteith, fogle, foulard, stook, Barcelona

Origin

mid 16th century: from hand + kerchief.

More
  • kerchief from (Middle English):

    The early spelling was kerchef, from Old French cuevrechief, from couvrir ‘to cover’ and chief ‘head’. It was formerly used to describe a woman's head-dress, a type of cloth covering over the hair. The word was used meaning ‘cloth’ as the second element of handkerchief from the mid 16th century.

Words that rhyme with handkerchief

mischief

Definition of handkerchief in:

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