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Denotation vs. Connotation

buttonhole

[buht-n-hohl] /ˈbʌt nˌhoʊl/
noun
1.
the hole, slit, or loop through which a button is passed and by which it is secured.
2.
Chiefly British. a boutonniere.
3.
Surgery. a short, straight incision through the wall of a cavity or a canal.
verb (used with object), buttonholed, buttonholing.
4.
to sew with a buttonhole stitch.
5.
to make buttonholes in.
6.
to hold by the buttonhole or otherwise abruptly detain (someone) in conversation:
The reporter tried to buttonhole the mayor for a statement on the bus strike.
Origin of buttonhole
1555-1565
1555-65; button + hole
Related forms
buttonholer, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for buttonhole
Historical Examples
  • The buttonhole model is intended to show how much skill has been acquired.

    Handicraft for Girls Idabelle McGlauflin
  • He pulled it out of his buttonhole and tossed it into the fire-place.

    The Greater Inclination Edith Wharton
  • The bar of the watch-guard worked through the buttonhole, and the watch—Platte's watch—slid quietly on to the carpet.

  • Arthur had a fine rose in his buttonhole and looked profoundly thoughtful.

    Alice Adams Booth Tarkington
  • But only think of dancing with lunatics—and such ugly ones too—and being held by the buttonhole by some wild-eyed ancient mariner.

    The Night Side of London J. Ewing Ritchie
  • In his mouth was a cigarette, and in his buttonhole a pink carnation.

    A Spirit in Prison Robert Hichens
  • Many workers, particularly tailors, always "stay" or "bar" around a buttonhole before working.

    Textiles and Clothing Kate Heintz Watson
  • Let him go with his flower in his buttonhole and dance somewhere else.

    Rosinante to the Road Again John Dos Passos
  • Lee had stopped at a florist's and bought a rose for his buttonhole.

    The Quaint Companions Leonard Merrick
  • Once he stooped to pick a flower which he stuck in his buttonhole.

    Peak and Prairie Anna Fuller
British Dictionary definitions for buttonhole

buttonhole

/ˈbʌtənˌhəʊl/
noun
1.
a slit in a garment, etc, through which a button is passed to fasten two surfaces together
2.
a flower or small bunch of flowers worn pinned to the lapel or in the buttonhole, esp at weddings, formal dances, etc US name boutonniere
verb (transitive)
3.
to detain (a person) in conversation
4.
to make buttonholes in
5.
to sew with buttonhole stitch
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
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buttonhole in Medicine

buttonhole but·ton·hole (bŭt'n-hōl')
n.

  1. A short straight surgical cut made through the wall of a cavity or canal.

  2. The contraction of an orifice down to a narrow slit, as in mitral stenosis.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Slang definitions & phrases for buttonhole

buttonhole

verb

To get someone's attention as if by taking hold by a buttonhole: listening to and buttonholing other researchers

[1880+; Button in the same sense is attested from the early 1860s]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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15
18
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