• synonyms


  1. a petticoat of haircloth or other stiff material, worn under a full skirt to keep it belled out.
  2. a stiff, coarse cotton material for interlining.
  3. a hoop skirt.
  4. a reinforcement of iron straps for holding together brickwork, as of a furnace or chimney.
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Origin of crinoline

1820–30; < French < Italian crinolino, equivalent to crino horse-hair (≪ Latin crīnis hair) + lino flax < Latin līnum; cf. linen
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for crinoline

Historical Examples

  • An awkward predicament is as unfamiliar to me as a crinoline; I have never been in one.

    The Idler Magazine, Volume III, April 1893


  • A woman is ashamed to be without a crinoline or a bustle when all the rest wear them.


    William Graham Sumner

  • But Maryanne wore her hoops as a duchess wears her crinoline.

  • Nor he you in an ordinary silk gown, puffed out with crinoline.

    The Bertrams

    Anthony Trollope

  • I saw them to-day, without any crinoline, pulling the garden-roller.

    The Book of Snobs

    William Makepeace Thackeray

British Dictionary definitions for crinoline


  1. a stiff fabric, originally of horsehair and linen used in lining garments
  2. a petticoat stiffened with this, worn to distend skirts, esp in the mid-19th century
  3. a framework of steel hoops worn for the same purpose
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Word Origin

C19: from French, from Italian crinolino, from crino horsehair, from Latin crīnis hair + lino flax, from Latin līnum
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 crinoline


1830, from French crinoline "hair cloth" (19c.), from Italian crinolino, from crino "horsehair" (from Latin crinis "hair") + lino "flax, thread," from Latin linum (see linen). So called from the warp and woof fibers of the original mixture.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper