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[mey-pohl] /ˈmeɪˌpoʊl/
noun, (often lowercase)
a tall pole, decorated with flowers and ribbons, around which people dance or engage in sports during May Day celebrations.
Origin of Maypole
First recorded in 1545-55; May + pole1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Maypole
Historical Examples
  • That the Maypole bar should come to this, and we should live to see it!

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • Before the lapse of many minutes the party halted at the Maypole door.

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • As this rider passed, he checked his steed, and called him of the Maypole by his name.

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • It'll save you having to walk from the Maypole, there and back again.

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • Cheerily, though there were none abroad to see it, shone the Maypole light that evening.

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • These they brought back to the village, and made into wreaths to trim the Maypole.

  • The dance was called the Maypole dance, and it had proper steps of its own, just like any other dance.

  • Jerry was glad for Andy's sake when the Maypole dance was over.

    Jerry's Charge Account Hazel Hutchins Wilson
  • These are very good songs, but they will not do for a Maypole dance.

  • The teacher asked the little girl if she was going to the Maypole dance.

British Dictionary definitions for Maypole


a tall pole fixed upright in an open space during May-Day celebrations, around which people dance holding streamers attached at its head
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 Maypole



"high striped pole decorated with flowers and ribbons for May Day merrymakers to dance around," attested from 1550s but certainly much older, as the first mention of it is in an ordinance banning them, and there are references to such erections, though not by this name, from a mid-14c. Welsh poem. See May Day.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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