• synonyms


[blous, blouz]
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  1. a usually lightweight, loose-fitting garment for women and children, covering the body from the neck or shoulders more or less to the waistline, with or without a collar and sleeves, worn inside or outside a skirt, slacks, etc.
  2. a single-breasted, semifitted military jacket.
  3. a loose outer garment, reaching to the hip or thigh, or below the knee, and sometimes belted.Compare smock frock.
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verb (used without object), bloused, blous·ing.
  1. to puff out in a drooping fullness, as a blouse above a fitted waistband.
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verb (used with object), bloused, blous·ing.
  1. to dispose the material of a garment in loose folds, as trouser legs over the tops of boots.
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Origin of blouse

1820–30; < French, perhaps from the phrase *vêtement de laine blouse garment of short (i.e., uncarded, pure) wool; compare Provençal (lano) blouso pure (wool) < Old High German blōz naked, cognate with Old English bleat poor, miserable
Related formsblouse·like, adjectiveblous·y, adjectiveun·bloused, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for blouse

turtleneck, bodice, pullover, shell, T-shirt, slipover, middy, bodysuit

Examples from the Web for blouse

Contemporary Examples of blouse

Historical Examples of blouse

British Dictionary definitions for blouse


  1. a woman's shirtlike garment made of cotton, nylon, etc
  2. a loose-fitting smocklike garment, often knee length and belted, worn esp by E European peasants
  3. a loose-fitting waist-length belted jacket worn by soldiers
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  1. to hang or make so as to hang in full loose folds
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Word Origin for blouse

C19: from French, of unknown origin
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 blouse


1828 (from 1822 as a French word in English), from French blouse, "workman's or peasant's smock" (1788), origin unknown. Perhaps akin to Provençal (lano) blouso "short (wool)" [Gamillscheg]. Another suggestion [Klein] is that it is from Medieval Latin pelusia, from Pelusium, a city in Upper Egypt, supposedly a clothing manufacturing center in the Middle Ages.

In Paris, a very slovenly, loose, drawn frock, with most capacious sleeves, had been introduced called a blouse. Some of our priestesses of the toilet seemed emulous of copying this deshabille, with some slight alterations, but we never wish to see it on the symmetrical form of a British lady. ["Summary of Fashion for 1822," in "Museum of Foreign Literature and Science," Jan.-June 1823]
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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper