the sound made by a bell rung slowly, especially for a death or a funeral.
a sound or sign announcing the death of a person or the end, extinction, failure, etc., of something: the knell of parting day.
any mournful sound.
verb (used without object)
to sound, as a bell, especially a funeral bell.
to give forth a mournful, ominous, or warning sound.
verb (used with object)
to proclaim or summon by, or as if by, a bell.
Origin of knell
before 950; (noun) Middle Englishknel,Old Englishcynll; (v.) Middle Englishknellen, knyllen,Old Englishcynllan; cognate with Old Norseknylla to beat, strike; akin to Dutchknal bang, knallen to bang, GermanKnall explosion, knallen to explode