Share this entry

Share this page


Line breaks: pan|nier
Pronunciation: /ˈpanɪə

Definition of pannier in English:


1A basket, especially one of a pair carried by a beast of burden.
Example sentences
  • Large heavy items were either carried on primitive carts or dragged on sledges, and loose bulk materials were carried in panniers on horses.
  • They sounded idyllic and I began to break one of the golden rules of donkey-driving - never feel sorry for the donkey - as I watched Anatole, the brave little trooper, struggling between his 40-pound panniers.
  • Under direction, I tied the wet end to Anatole's saddle, having removed the panniers.
1.1Each of a pair of bags or boxes fitted on either side of the rear wheel of a bicycle or motorcycle.
Example sentences
  • The camera was transmitting to a video camera and receiver stashed in the pannier of a bicycle locked to a lamppost nearby.
  • However, when I throw my rear panniers on and ride the bike at higher speeds, the bike will shimmy if I remove my hands from the bars.
  • The factory workers, the cops, the carpenters, the plumbers, they all wheeled to work, tools protruding from voluminous canvas panniers.
2 historical Part of a skirt looped up round the hips.
Example sentences
  • La Sylphide also popularized the white tutus, freeing the ballerinas from the bondage of stiffening panniers.
  • In keeping with her subject she abandoned the ballerina's standard costume of voluminous skirts and panniers and appeared instead with her hair loose, wearing nothing but sandals and a simple muslin tunic.
  • The leather seats gave a little spring underneath our panniers, and Emily hurried to settle her dress before it flew in her face.
2.1A frame supporting a pannier of a skirt.
Example sentences
  • It was hitched up to reveal an underskirt of a different color and with no hoops or panniers.
  • In an undoubted nod to the skirt-extending panniers of Marie Antoinette's day, Eugénie wholeheartedly embraced the cage crinoline in 1855, thus sparking a fashion craze.


Middle English: from Old French panier, from Latin panarium 'bread basket', from panis 'bread'.

Definition of pannier in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

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

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day boscage
Pronunciation: ˈbɒskɪdʒ
a mass of trees or shrubs