• synonyms


[kawr-duh-roi, kawr-duh-roi]
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  1. a cotton-filling pile fabric with lengthwise cords or ridges.
  2. corduroys, trousers made of this fabric.
  1. of, relating to, or resembling corduroy.
  2. constructed of logs laid together transversely, as a road across swampy ground.
verb (used with object)
  1. to form (a road or the like) by laying logs transversely.
  2. to make a corduroy road across or along.

Origin of corduroy

1780–90; perhaps cord (cf. cords) + duroy, deroy (now obsolete) a woolen fabric originating in W England; later taken as French cord du roy the king's cords, though the fabric had no connection with France
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for corduroys

Historical Examples

  • The second girl is in rags, and a shawl; and the second youth in shirt and corduroys.

    The Little Dream (Second Series Plays)

    John Galsworthy

  • So neat in his dress was Sanders, that he was seldom seen abroad in corduroys.

    A Window in Thrums

    J. M. Barrie

  • Possibly my friend, the Faded Misanthrope in corduroys, is station-master.

  • A large man in corduroys and top boots advanced to meet Carley.

  • Some of our own contemporaries we hate particularly; Cobbett, for instance, and other bad fellows in fustian and corduroys.

British Dictionary definitions for corduroys


pl n
  1. trousers or breeches of corduroy


    1. a heavy cotton pile fabric with lengthways ribs
    2. (as modifier)a corduroy coat
    See also corduroys

Word Origin

C18: perhaps from the proper name Corderoy
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 corduroys



1780, probably from cord + obsolete 17c. duroy, name of a coarse fabric made in England, of unknown origin. Folk etymology is from *corde du roi "the king's cord," but this is not attested in French, where the term for the cloth was velours à côtes. Applied in U.S. to a road of logs across swampy ground (1780s) on similarity of appearance.

CORDUROY ROAD. A road or causeway constructed with logs laid together over swamps or marshy places. When properly finished earth is thrown between them by which the road is made smooth; but in newly settled parts of the United States they are often left uncovered, and hence are extremely rough and bad to pass over with a carriage. Sometimes they extend many miles. They derive their name from their resemblance to a species of ribbed velvet, called corduroy. [Bartlett]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper