Word Frequency Lists Translation Services Word Databases
Alphadictionary.com

Our Sponsors

Technical Translation
Website TranslationClip Art
 

furbelow

Printable Version Pronunciation: fê(r)-bê-lo Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: 1. A flounce, a ruffle on a garment, curtain, tablecloth, or the like. 2. Anything unnecessary but showy.

Notes: A strip of fur on the hem of an overcoat would be pretty fur below but not a furbelow, which is a ruffle, a flounce. Still, while you may flounce into a room, your dress bouncing up and down, you cannot furbelow into a room. To furbelow a room, you would have to decorate it with ruffles. Please, try to keep all these Good Words straight.

In Play: See my furbelow?Furbelows are generally associated with women's dress: "Murine wore a polka dot jumper with flowery furbelows on the shoulder straps." But you may occasionally see them in unexpected places, "When McDowell turned up at the fete with a furbelow on his kilt and a flounce in his walk, the womenfolk shied away from him." Of course, furbelows need not be ruffles: "Rod loves to load his car with furbelows like oversized tires, mud flaps, and running board lights."

Word History: Today's Good Word is one that has seen the world. It would seem to have descended from Provenšal farbello "fringe", a corruption of Italian faldella, the diminutive of falda "flap, leaf, sheet". Now, falda was borrowed from a Germanic word that also gave us Old English faldan "to fold", modern day fold. The old word also went into the compound faldistolaz "folding stool", absorbed by Medieval Latin as faldistolium "folding chair". Faldistolium went on to become Old French faldestoel and, ultimately, Modern French fauteuil "armchair".

Dr. Goodword, alphaDictionary.com

P.S. - Register for the Daily Good Word E-Mail! - You can get our daily Good Word sent directly to you via e-mail in either HTML or Text format. Go to our Registration Page to sign up today!