Definition of cloak in English:

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Pronunciation: /klōk/


1An outdoor overgarment, typically sleeveless, that hangs loosely from the shoulders.
Example sentences
  • Though cloaks were standard dress from the 1st century AD, wool or linen clothes have not survived from Roman Britain.
  • They were both dressed in cloaks, their faces completely covered.
  • They are generally very tall, with long hooded cloaks that cover their faces and their entire bodies.
cape, poncho, serape, shawl, mantle, wrap, pelisse, burnoose, cope, robe, cowl, djellaba, tippet;
cassock, chasuble, pallium
historical cardinal
1.1Something serving to hide or disguise something: lifting the cloak of secrecy on the arms trade
More example sentences
  • No, they are not animals, they are evil demons who hide under the cloak of kindness and normality while they hatch their plots.
  • By opening up the doors it will help us to hold ministers to account, and make it more difficult for them to hide behind the cloak of secrecy.
  • If you are telling me we are hiding under the cloak of Parliament, you are telling me that we should have no laws.
cover, veil, mantle, shroud, screen, mask, shield, blanket


[with object]
1Dress in a cloak: she cloaked herself in black
More example sentences
  • Every one of the departing Wolves were cloaked and hooded in black, despite the heat of the summer.
  • He was cloaked and hooded in black and carried a sword that was obviously tipped with poison.
  • It seemed to be a man, but none there could tell, for he was hooded and cloaked in all black with a sword by his side.
1.1Hide, cover, or disguise (something): the horror of war was cloaked in the trappings of chivalry
More example sentences
  • The bigger the game, the more the sense of invulnerability with which the man from Waikato cloaks himself.
  • The truck wends its way through kilometres of pine and eucalyptus; areas that were once cloaked in native bush.
  • When we first met Govindan - at a recent photo expo in the city - he was cloaked in antiquity.
conceal, hide, cover, veil, shroud, mask, obscure, cloud;
envelop, swathe, surround


Middle English: from Old French cloke, dialect variant of cloche 'bell, cloak' (from its bell shape), from medieval Latin clocca 'bell'. Compare with clock1.

  • The source of cloak was Old French cloke, a variant of cloche meaning ‘bell’ and, because of its shape, ‘cloak’. The ultimate origin is medieval Latin clocca ‘bell’. See also clock. The expression cloak-and-dagger is used of plotting, intrigue, and espionage. As cloak-and-sword, a translation of the French phrase de cape et d'épée, it dates from the early 19th century. It originally referred to stories and plays featuring intrigue or melodramatic adventure, in which the main characters tended to wear a cloak and a dagger or a sword. The idea is, however, older: Chaucer wrote of the smiler with the knife beneath his cloak.

Words that rhyme with cloak

awoke, bespoke, bloke, broke, choke, Coke, convoke, croak, evoke, folk, invoke, joke, Koch, moke, oak, okey-doke, poke, provoke, revoke, roque, smoke, soak, soke, spoke, stoke, stony-broke (US stone-broke), stroke, toke, toque, woke, yoke, yolk

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: cloak

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