Share this entry
balaclava Line breaks: bala|clava
Pronunciation: /ˌbaləˈklɑːvə/
(also balaclava helmet)

Definition of balaclava in English:


chiefly British
Image of balaclava
A close-fitting garment covering the whole head and neck except for parts of the face, typically made of wool.
Example sentences
  • They were all wearing balaclavas, dark close-fitting clothes and short bomber-style jackets.
  • The man with the gun, clad from head to toe in black clothing and wearing a balaclava underneath the hood of his coat, asked for money.
  • I suppose it could have been some sort of hat rather than a balaclava.


Late 19th century (worn originally by soldiers on active service in the Crimean War): named after the port of Balaclava in the Crimea (see Balaclava, Battle of).

  • A balaclava was first a type of woollen covering for the head and neck worn by soldiers on active service in the Crimean War (1854), and was named after the village of Balaclava in the Crimea.

Words that rhyme with balaclava

Bratislava, carver, cassava, Costa Brava, guava, Java, kava, larva, lava, palaver
Definition of balaclava in:
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.

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources