a cloth, often made of or trimmed with lace, worn about the neck by men especially in the 17th century.
Medicine/Medical. a bandage made by folding a triangular piece of material into a band, used temporarily for a fracture or wound.

Origin of cravat

1650–60; < French cravate neckcloth, literally, Croat (< German Krabate < Serbo-Croatian hr̀vāt); so called because worn by Croatian mercenaries in the French army Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for cravat

overlay, band, tie, neckerchief, scarf, ascot

Examples from the Web for cravat

Historical Examples of cravat

  • Mr Vladimir, arranging his cravat, observed him in the glass over the mantelpiece.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • Change that cravat for this of mine, that coat for this of mine.

    A Tale of Two Cities

    Charles Dickens

  • He loosened his cravat, unfastened his waistcoat, and felt for the beating of his heart.

    Henry Dunbar

    M. E. Braddon

  • His cravat had been tied many times and needed it once more.

    Ruggles of Red Gap

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • He had promised me faithfully not to fumble with his cravat, and evidently he had not once stirred.

    Ruggles of Red Gap

    Harry Leon Wilson

British Dictionary definitions for cravat



a scarf of silk or fine wool, worn round the neck, esp by men

Word Origin for cravat

C17: from French cravate, from Serbo-Croat Hrvat Croat; so called because worn by Croats in the French army during the Thirty Years' War
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 cravat

1650s, from French cravate (17c.), from Cravate "Croatian," from German Krabate, from Serbo-Croatian Hrvat "a Croat" (see Croat). Cravats came into fashion 1650s in imitation of linen scarves worn by Croatian mercenaries in the French army in the Thirty Years War.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper