noun (plural -chiefs; also handkerchieves) Date: 1530 1. a small usually square piece of cloth used for usually personal purposes (as blowing the nose) or as a clothing accessory 2. kerchief 1

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

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  • Handkerchief — Hand ker*chief (h[a^][ng] k[ e]r*ch[i^]f; 277), n. [Hand + kerchief.] 1. A piece of cloth, usually square and often fine and elegant, carried for wiping the face or hands. [1913 Webster] 2. A piece of cloth shaped like a handkerchief to be worn… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • handkerchief — (n.) 1520s, from HAND (Cf. hand) + KERCHIEF (Cf. kerchief) cloth for covering the head. Thus it is a one word contradiction in terms. By form handkercher was in use 16c. 19c. A dropped handkerchief as a token of flirtation or courtship is… …   Etymology dictionary

  • handkerchief — The recommended plural is handkerchiefs, not handkerchieves …   Modern English usage

  • handkerchief — ► NOUN (pl. handkerchiefs or handkerchieves) ▪ a square of cotton or other material for wiping one s nose …   English terms dictionary

  • handkerchief — [haŋ′kər chif΄, haŋ′kərchēf΄] n. pl. handkerchiefs [haŋ′kərchifs΄, haŋ′kərchivz΄, ] also [ haŋ′kərchēfs΄, haŋ′kərchēvz΄] [ HAND + KERCHIEF] 1. a small, square piece of linen, cotton, silk, etc., for wiping the nose, eyes, or face, or carried or… …   English World dictionary

  • Handkerchief — A handkerchief (also called handkercher or hanky) is a form of a kerchief, typically a square of fabric that can be carried in the pocket, for personal hygiene purposes such as wiping one s hands or blowing one s nose, but also used as a… …   Wikipedia

  • handkerchief — noun /ˈhæŋkətʃɪf,ˈhæŋkɚtʃɪf/ a) A piece of cloth, usually square and often fine and elegant, carried for wiping the face, eyes, nose or hands. b) A piece of cloth shaped like a handkerchief to be worn about the neck; a neckerchief or neckcloth.… …   Wiktionary

  • handkerchief — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ clean ▪ crumpled, dirty ▪ pocket ▪ lace, linen, paper, silk …   Collocations dictionary

  • handkerchief */ — UK [ˈhæŋkə(r)ˌtʃɪf] / US [ˈhæŋkərtʃɪf] noun [countable] Word forms handkerchief : singular handkerchief plural handkerchiefs or handkerchieves UK [ˈhæŋkə(r)ˌtʃiːvz] / US [ˈhæŋkərtʃɪvz] a small square piece of cloth or paper used for wiping your… …   English dictionary

  • handkerchief —   Hainakā, hinakā.    ♦ Pocket handkerchief, hainakā pa eke, hainakā pakeke.    ♦ Paper handkerchief, hainakā pepa …   English-Hawaiian dictionary

  • handkerchief — I (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) n. nose cloth, sudarium; neckerchief; bandanna, foulard; scarf, headcloth, headkerchief. See clothing. II (Roget s IV) n. Syn. kerchief, napkin, neckerchief, headband, tissue, paper handkerchief, rag*,… …   English dictionary for students

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