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kerchief

[kur-chif, -cheef] /ˈkɜr tʃɪf, -tʃif/
noun
1.
a woman's square scarf worn as a covering for the head or sometimes the shoulders.
2.
Origin of kerchief
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English kerchef, syncopated variant of keverchef < Old French cuevrechef literally, (it) covers (the) head. See cover, chief
Related forms
kerchiefed, kerchieft, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for kerchief
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The kerchief is made of fine Brussels net and the darning is done with India floss.

    The Art of Modern Lace Making The Butterick Publishing Co.
  • When he held out the kerchief to her, their hands, by chance, touched for a moment.

    The Dream Emile Zola
  • When the child is taken out of the warm water, its body must be dried with a kerchief of fine cotton, unhemmed.

    Tales of Old Japan Algernon Bertram Freeman-Mitford
  • It was Mukhorty, and not only Mukhorty, but the sledge with the shafts and the kerchief.

    Master and Man Leo Tolstoy
  • The kerchief, crossed over her breast, but open at the neck, afforded a ravishing glimpse of her beautiful throat.

    Woven with the Ship Cyrus Townsend Brady
  • She removed the kerchief from her head, and began to fan herself.

    Sielanka: An Idyll Henryk Sienkiewicz
  • The lady should have waved her kerchief in token of a tryst and cantered down the path to meet her cavalier.

    The Bastonnais John Lesperance
  • Flemild stood struck with astonishment, her kerchief half off her head.

    One Snowy Night Emily Sarah Holt
  • Sir Richard's face was black with ire, as he staunched the blood that covered his forehead with his kerchief.

British Dictionary definitions for kerchief

kerchief

/ˈkɜːtʃɪf/
noun
1.
a piece of cloth worn tied over the head or around the neck
Derived Forms
kerchiefed, adjective
Word Origin
C13: from Old French cuevrechef, from covrir to cover + chef head; see chief
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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Word Origin and History for kerchief
n.

early 14c., curchef, earlier kovrechief (early 13c.), from Anglo-French courchief, Old French couvrechief, literally "cover head," from couvrir "to cover" (see cover) + chief "head" (see chief).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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kerchief in the Bible

mentioned only Ezek. 13:18, 21, as an article of apparel or ornament applied to the head of the idolatrous women of Israel. The precise meaning of the word is uncertain. It appears to have been a long loose shawl, such as Oriental women wrap themselves in (Ruth 3:15; Isa. 3:22). Some think that it was a long veil or head-dress, denoting by its form the position of those who wore it.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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20
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