a small covering, usually ornamental, placed on the backs and arms of upholstered furniture to prevent wear or soiling; a tidy.

Origin of antimacassar

First recorded in 1850–55; anti- + Macassar (oil) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for antimacassar

Historical Examples of antimacassar

  • Oh, yes, in that corner, decently covered with an antimacassar.

  • So she laid the doll on the sofa, and covered it with an antimacassar, to sleep.

    Sons and Lovers

    David Herbert Lawrence

  • He wrenched an antimacassar from a chair and used it as a gag.

    High Noon


  • And what on earth is the good of an antimacassar, I should like to know?

    Faces in the Fire

    Frank W. Boreham

  • The antimacassar is the one indispensable article in the establishment.

    Faces in the Fire

    Frank W. Boreham

British Dictionary definitions for antimacassar



a cloth covering the back and arms of chairs, etc, to prevent soiling or as decoration

Word Origin for antimacassar

C19: from anti- + Macassar (oil)
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