9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[sak-klawth, -kloth] /ˈsækˌklɔθ, -ˌklɒθ/
coarse cloth worn as a sign of mourning or penitence.
in sackcloth and ashes, in a state of repentance or sorrow; contrite:
She would be in sackcloth and ashes for days over every trifling error she made.
Origin of sackcloth
1350-1400; Middle English; see sack1, cloth
Related forms
sackclothed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for sackcloth
  • They graze on munchies until they figure it's time to diet, and then they cover themselves with ashes and sackcloth.
  • They wore sackcloth tunics and fishnet shirts studded with crocheted pouches that were supposed to stop bullets.
  • Prudence is the watchword now: sackcloth after the brilliant silks and brocades of the gilded age.
  • Under his episcopal ornaments he wore a rough hair shirt, and had no better covering to his bed than sackcloth.
  • With them he went to the church, where one of them covered him with sackcloth, the other put ashes on his head.
  • His under garment was sackcloth, over which he wore a white coat of sheepskin, with a girdle.
  • They had put upon her a garment of coarse sackcloth.
British Dictionary definitions for sackcloth


coarse cloth such as sacking
garments made of such cloth, worn formerly to indicate mourning or penitence
sackcloth and ashes, a public display of extreme grief, remorse, or repentance
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 Origin and History for sackcloth

penitential or grieving garb, late 13c., literally "cloth of which sacks are made," from sack (n.1) + cloth. In the Biblical sense it was of goats' or camels' hair, the coarsest possible clothing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
sackcloth in the Bible

cloth made of black goats' hair, coarse, rough, and thick, used for sacks, and also worn by mourners (Gen. 37:34; 42:25; 2 Sam. 3:31; Esther 4:1, 2; Ps. 30:11, etc.), and as a sign of repentance (Matt. 11:21). It was put upon animals by the people of Nineveh (Jonah 3:8).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for sackcloth

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for sackcloth

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with sackcloth

Nearby words for sackcloth