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hairpin

[hair-pin]
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noun
  1. a slender U-shaped piece of wire, shell, etc., used by women to fasten up the hair or hold a headdress.
adjective
  1. (of a road, curve in a road, etc.) sharply curved back, as in a U shape: a hairpin turn.

Origin of hairpin

First recorded in 1770–80; hair + pin
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for hairpin

hairpin

noun
  1. a thin double-pronged pin used by women to fasten the hair
  2. (modifier) (esp of a bend in a road) curving very sharply
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 hairpin

n.

also hair-pin, 1788 (two words), from hair + pin (n.). A hairpin turn, etc., is from 1906. Hairpin (or clothespin) was American English slang for "person" c.1880-1910, especially in the expression "That's the kind of hairpin I am."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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