• synonyms


noun British.
  1. house(def 19).
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Origin of tombola

1875–80; < Italian, derivative of tombolare to tumble, itself derivative of tombare to fall
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for tombola

Historical Examples of tombola

  • Then a lottery, or "tombola," as it was called, was planned for.

    The Quest

    Frederik van Eeden

  • Rudolph Brox returned from the tombola, where he had drawn a silver match-box.

    The Law Inevitable

    Louis Couperus

  • But the curtain rose; that is to say, the tombola commenced.

  • Somebody won the tombola at last, and Pepe told Caper he should wait for the fireworks and the concert.

  • The next thing is to paint or draw on it the figure of an old gentleman like our picture, and you have the Tombola complete.

British Dictionary definitions for tombola


  1. British a type of lottery, esp at a fête, in which tickets are drawn from a revolving drum
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Word Origin for tombola

C19: from Italian, from tombolare to somersault; see tumble
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 tombola


"Italian lotto-style lottery," 1880, from Italian tombolare "to tumble, fall upside down."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper