Definition of furbelow in English:

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furbelow

Pronunciation: /ˈfərbəˌlō/

noun

1A gathered strip or pleated border of a skirt or petticoat.
Example sentences
  • Less juvenile cladding and other furbelows, better-integrated hood scoops, nicer stances and silhouettes - you name it, the '05s are better at it than their predecessors were.
1.1 (furbelows) Showy ornaments or trimmings: frills and furbelows just made her look stupid
More example sentences
  • This evening, gift wrapping a couple of small presents for Graham's birthday, tomorrow, I had to give up on the frills and furbelows and resort to plain old parcel wrapping, and none too tidily at that.
  • In his book on orchids he documents the elaborate frills and furbelows, gimmicks and traps, that lure and exploit insect pollinators, thereby ensuring cross-fertilization.

verb

[with object] (usually as adjective furbelowed) literary
Adorn with trimmings.
Example sentences
  • The desserts seem steadier, although they, too, succumb to major-league busyness, being garnished and furbelowed to a fare-thee-well.
  • Zoffany's painting of Mrs Oswald shows a lemon-lipped, bored-looking woman trussed in a furbelowed dress.
  • In chests in the attic are furbelowed skirts of her great-grandmother's day, the day when her set of six chairs, delicately designed by a colonial craftsman, made a wedding present for her ancestor.

Origin

Late 17th century: from French falbala 'trimming, flounce', of unknown ultimate origin.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: fur·be·low

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