Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

Fall Head Over Heels...

passing bell

noun
1.
a bell tolled to announce a death or funeral.
2.
a portent or sign of the passing away of anything.
Origin of passing bell
1520-1530
1520-30
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for passing-bell
Historical Examples
  • Suddenly the chimes of a neighboring church ring the passing-bell.

    The Iron Pincers Eugne Sue
  • I wish we could find out if the passing-bell was tolling for her.

  • It was frail, shrill, poignant as a lament and more solemn than a passing-bell, for all its hurry and lightness.

    The Woman of Mystery Maurice Leblanc
  • Well, at last he rung the bell: O, thought I, that it was my passing-bell!

    Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded Samuel Richardson
  • The procession moved slowly along,—the passing-bell tolling each minute, and a muffled drum sounding hollowly at intervals.

    The Lancashire Witches William Harrison Ainsworth
  • Had you married me to a Bagpipe, or a passing-bell, I should have been better pleased.

  • Then again the song of nightingales, the croak of frogs, sounds of clarinet and passing-bell.

    The Green Book Mr Jkai
  • He often felt the necessity of asserting himself, lest he should presently hear his own passing-bell and epitaph.

    Meadow Grass Alice Brown
  • She had a fancy for the passing-bell, and begged that it should be tolled the minute the breath was out of her body, poor soul!

  • At that moment the passing-bell tolled out—three times three; its succession of quick strokes following it.

    Johnny Ludlow, Third Series Mrs. Henry Wood
British Dictionary definitions for passing-bell

passing bell

noun
1.
a bell rung to announce a death or a funeral Also called death bell, death knell
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
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for passing bell

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for passing

10
13
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for passing-bell