See more synonyms for gown on Thesaurus.com
  1. a woman's dress or robe, especially one that is full-length.
  2. nightgown.
  3. dressing gown.
  4. evening gown.
  5. a loose, flowing outer garment in any of various forms, worn by a man or woman as distinctive of office, profession, or status: an academic gown.
  6. the student and teaching body in a university or college town.
verb (used with object)
  1. to dress in a gown.

Origin of gown

1300–50; Middle English goune < Old French < Late Latin gunna fur or leather garment
Related formsun·gowned, adjective

Synonyms for gown

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. frock.

Synonym study

1. See dress.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gowning

Historical Examples of gowning

  • If editors pay him large sums for gowning his women in certain costumes, so much the better.

    In Vanity Fair

    Eleanor Hoyt Brainerd

British Dictionary definitions for gowning


  1. any of various outer garments, such as a woman's elegant or formal dress, a dressing robe, or a protective garment, esp one worn by surgeons during operations
  2. a loose wide garment indicating status, such as worn by academics
  3. the members of a university as opposed to the other residents of the university townCompare town (def. 7)
  1. (tr) to supply with or dress in a gown

Word Origin for gown

C14: from Old French goune, from Late Latin gunna garment made of leather or fur, of Celtic 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 gowning



c.1300, from Old French goune "robe, coat, habit, gown," from Late Latin gunna "leather garment, skin, hide," of unknown origin. Used by St. Boniface (8c.) for a fur garment permitted for old or infirm monks. Klein writes it is probably "a word adopted from a language of the Apennine or the Balkan Peninsula." OED points to Byzantine Greek gouna, a word for a coarse garment sometimes made of skins, but also notes "some scholars regard [Late Latin gunna] as of Celtic origin."

In 18c., gown was the common word for what is now usually styled a dress. It was maintained more in the U.S. than in Britain, but was somewhat revived 20c. in fashion senses and in comb. forms (e.g. bridal gown, nightgown). Meaning "flowing robe worn as a badge of office or authority" is from late 14c., on image of the Roman toga. As collective singular for "residents of a university" (1650s) it usually now is opposed to town.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

gowning in Medicine


  1. A robe or smock worn in operating rooms and other parts of hospitals as a guard against contamination.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with gowning


see cap and gown; town and gown.

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