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  1. a clasp for holding a woman's or girl's hair in place.

Origin of barrette

From French, dating back to 1900–05; see origin at bar1, -ette
Can be confusedbarrette beret
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for barrette


  1. a clasp or pin for holding women's hair in place

Word Origin

C20: from French: a little bar, from barre bar 1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for barrette


"bar clip for women's hair," 1901, from French barrette, diminutive of barre "bar" (see bar (n.1)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper