chiffon

[shi-fon, shif-on]
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adjective
  1. (of dresses, scarves, etc.) resembling or made of chiffon.
  2. (in cooking) having a light, frothy texture, as certain pies and cakes containing beaten egg whites.

Origin of chiffon

1755–65; < French, equivalent to chiffe rag (< Arabic shiff sheer fabric) + -on noun suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


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British Dictionary definitions for chiffon

chiffon

noun
  1. a fine transparent or almost transparent plain-weave fabric of silk, nylon, etc
  2. (often plural) rare feminine finery
adjective
  1. made of chiffon
  2. (of soufflés, pies, cakes, etc) having a very light fluffy texture
Derived Formschiffony, adjective

Word Origin for chiffon

C18: from French, from chiffe rag; probably related to chip
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 chiffon
n.

"feminine finery, sheer silk fabric," 1765, from French chiffon (17c.), diminutive of chiffe "a rag, piece of cloth" (17c.), of unknown origin, perhaps a variant of English chip (n.1) or one of its Germanic cousins. Klein suggests Arabic. Extension to pastry is attested by 1929.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper