a covering for the hand made with a separate sheath for each finger and for the thumb.

verb (used with object), gloved, glov·ing.

to cover with or as if with a glove; provide with gloves.
to serve as a glove for.


    hand and glove. hand(def 55).
    handle with kid gloves. kid gloves(def 2).
    take up the glove. gauntlet1(def 4).
    throw down the glove. gauntlet1(def 5).

Origin of glove

before 900; Middle English; Old English glōf; cognate with Old Norse glōfi
Related formsglove·less, adjectiveglove·like, adjectiveun·gloved, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for glove

mitt, muff, gauntlet, gage, mitten

Examples from the Web for glove

Contemporary Examples of glove

Historical Examples of glove

  • I asked if the muff, as well as the glove, had been searched carefully.

  • "Yes," answered Dorothy, buttoning her glove and glancing at the clock.

    Roden's Corner

    Henry Seton Merriman

  • By the way, how did he get your glove, or is that merely brag on his part?

  • Yes, it is our business to do so; but the glove has not been of much assistance to us.

  • No one was observing him, and the glove was immediately concealed.

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

British Dictionary definitions for glove



(often plural) a shaped covering for the hand with individual sheaths for the fingers and thumb, made of leather, fabric, etcSee also gauntlet 1 (def. 2)
any of various large protective hand covers worn in sports, such as a boxing glove
hand in glove informal in an intimate relationship or close association
handle with kid gloves informal to treat with extreme care
with the gloves off informal (of a dispute, argument, etc) conducted mercilessly and in earnest, with no reservations


(tr; usually passive) to cover or provide with or as if with gloves
Derived Formsgloved, adjectivegloveless, adjective

Word Origin for glove

Old English glōfe; related to Old Norse glōfi
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 glove

Old English glof "glove, covering for the hand," also "palm of the hand," from Proto-Germanic *galofo (cf. Old Norse glofi), probably from *ga- collective prefix + *lofi "hand" (cf. Old Norse lofi, Middle English love, Gothic lofa "flat of the hand"), from PIE *lep- "be flat; palm, sole, shoulder blade" (cf. Russian lopata "shovel;" Lithuanian lopa "claw," lopeta "shovel, spade").

German Handschuh, the usual word for "glove," literally "hand-shoe" (Old High German hantscuoh; also Danish and Swedish hantsche) is represented by Old English Handscio (the name of one of Beowulf's companions, eaten by Grendel), but this is attested only as a proper name. To fit like a glove is first recorded 1771.


"to cover or fit with a glove," c.1400, from glove (n.). Related: Gloved; gloving. Glover as a surname is from mid-13c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with glove


see fit like a glove; hand in glove; handle with kid gloves; hang up (one's gloves); with the gloves off.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.