EXAMPLES | WORD ORIGIN noun a board, usually square, used by masons to hold mortar. Also called cap. a cap with a close-fitting crown surmounted by a stiff, flat, square piece from which a tassel hangs, worn as part of academic costume. Origin of mortarboard
First recorded in
1850–55; mortar 2
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for mortarboard Contemporary Examples of mortarboard Historical Examples of mortarboard
As for the
mortarboard and gown, undergraduate opinion rather requires that they be left behind.
Mr. Worthington pushed back his
mortarboard and revealed the crimson chevron which it had bitten into his bald brow.
A right instinct sent him tiptoe over his lawn, another made him doff his
mortarboard. British Dictionary definitions for mortarboard noun a black tasselled academic cap with a flat square top covered with cloth Also called: hawk a small square board with a handle on the underside for carrying mortar
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Word Origin and History for mortarboard n.
mortar-board, "academic cap," 1854, probably from mortar (1) + board (n.1); so called because it resembles a mason's square board for carrying mortar. Earlier it was called a mortar cap (1680s) or simply morter (c.1600), from French mortier.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper