Definition of robe in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /rəʊb/


1A long, loose outer garment reaching to the ankles: a young man in a fez and ragged robe a baby in christening robes
More example sentences
  • The selection of textiles range from a fragment of printed cotton purchased at a flea market to Parisian couture gowns, African wall hangings and Turkish robes.
  • A boy behind him sews his robe to the prayer mat so that when the meditation is over and he stands up, the mat stands up with him.
  • She wears a long robe patterned with star and sky symbols fringed with delicate pearls.
cloak, wrap, mantle, cape, kaftan;
North American  wrapper;
Arabic dishdasha, djellaba;
Turkish dolman;
African  kanzu;
Hawaiian muumuu
1.1 (often robes) A robe worn, especially on formal or ceremonial occasions, as an indication of the wearer’s rank, office, or profession: he was dressed in his archbishop’s robes after some function
More example sentences
  • She designed the clothes, which range from suave street garb to ceremonial robes.
  • He wears his red robes of office as Judge of the King's Bench.
  • Whereas Erasmus wears the black robes of an academic, the archbishop dresses in priestly white.
1.2A dressing gown or bathrobe: he was clad in a short towelling robe
More example sentences
  • She wrapped a red silk robe around herself and tied it.
  • I would have wrapped my warm, terry cloth robe about me, but it wasn't in the bathroom.
  • She carefully got out wiping her smooth legs dry then putting on the terry cotton robe to answer the door.
2North American dated short for lap robe.


[with object] (usually as adjective robed)
1Clothe in a robe: a circle of robed figures [in combination]: a white-robed Bedouin
More example sentences
  • Instead of being robed in the skin of a lion or a leopard that is customary for African royalty, he is clad in a cape made from the skin of some wild animal.
  • Simeon directs his song of praise to an elevated, imposing high priest in a scene dominated by an even more imposing crowned, splendidly robed temple guardian.
  • They are robed in ermine-trimmed royal red, as in Snow White.
1.1 [no object] Put on robes, especially for a formal or ceremonial occasion: I went into the vestry and robed for the Mass
dress oneself, dress, get dressed, attire oneself, enrobe
archaic apparel oneself


Middle English: from Old French, from the Germanic base (in the sense 'booty') of rob (because clothing was an important component of booty).

Words that rhyme with robe

daube, enrobe, globe, Job, lobe, probe, strobe

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: robe

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.