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or comb, coomb, coombe

[koom, kohm] /kum, koʊm/
noun, British.
a narrow valley or deep hollow, especially one enclosed on all but one side.
Origin of combe
Old English cumb valley < British Celtic; cf. cwm


or coombe

[koom, kohm] /kum, koʊm/
1. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for coombe
Historical Examples
  • And in fact it was something suggesting "a scene" upon which coombe was announced.

    Robin Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • At the upper end of the coombe the spring issued, and at the lower was the millpond.

    Round About a Great Estate Richard Jefferies
  • The cottagers in coombe hamlet always had sound boots; she never had; nor, indeed, her mother.

    Amaryllis at the Fair Richard Jefferies
  • She saw Mr. Wellwood, and heard a good account of coombe Prior.

    The Heir of Redclyffe Charlotte M. Yonge
  • Uncle William wouldn't believe that coombe had made mischief.

    The Hall and the Grange Archibald Marshall
  • He is delighted with coombe, and says the verdure is something wonderful.

  • The other day a travelling piano was wheeled through coombe and set up a tune in that lonesome spot.

    Amaryllis at the Fair Richard Jefferies
  • I ought not to have come to coombe Bysset; at least, they all said it was silly.

  • We came to coombe Bysset directly after the ceremony, and we are here still.

  • Everybody will say so, for they all know I wished to spend the whole summer at coombe.

British Dictionary definitions for coombe


variant spellings of coomb


(mainly Southern English) a short valley or deep hollow, esp in chalk areas
(mainly Northern English) another name for cirque
Word Origin
Old English cumb (in place names), probably of Celtic origin; compare Old French combe small valley and Welsh cwm valley
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
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Word Origin and History for coombe



also combe, "deep hollow or valley, especially on flank of a hill," mainly surviving in place names, from Old English cumb, probably a British word, from Celtic base *kumbos (cf. Welsh cwm in same sense). Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names says, "This is usually taken to be a Celtic loan ... but there was also OE cumb 'vessel, cup, bowl,'" which was "probably used in a transferred topographical sense reinforced in western districts by cwm."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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