Music and Dancea hollow instrument of cast metal, typically cup-shaped with a flaring mouth, suspended from the vertex and rung by the strokes of a clapper, hammer, or the like.
the stroke or sound of such an instrument:We rose at the bell.
anything in the form of a bell.
the large end of a funnel, or the end of a pipe, tube, or any musical wind instrument, when its edge is turned out and enlarged.
Architecturethe underlying part of a foliated capital.
Naval Termsany of the half-hour units of nautical time rung on the bell of a ship.
Naval Termseach individual ring of the bell, counted with others to reckon the time:It is now four bells.
Naval Termsa signal on the telegraph of a large power vessel, made between the navigating officers and the engineer.
[Zool.]umbrella (def. 2).
[Bot.]the bell-shaped corolla of a flower.
Metallurgya conical lid that seals the top of a blast furnace and lowers to admit a charge.
Idiomsring a bell, to evoke a memory, esp. a vague or partial recollection; remind one of something:His name rings a bell but I can't remember him.
Idiomsring the bell, to provide what is desired; be satisfactory or successful:This new book rings the bell with teenagers.
Idiomssaved by the bell:
Sport(of a boxer) saved from a knockout by the ringing of a gong signaling the end of a round.
(of any person) spared from anticipated trouble by some extraneous event.
with bells on,[Informal.]eagerly; ready to enjoy oneself:Just say when, and we'll be there with bells on.
to cause to swell or expand like a bell (often fol. by out):Belling out the tubes will permit a freer passage of air.
to put a bell on.
to take or have the form of a bell.
[Bot.]to produce bells; be in bell (said of hops when the seed vessels are forming).
bell the cat. See cat1 (def. 15).
bef. 1000; Middle English, Old English belle; cognate with Dutch bel; derivative of bell2
bell2(bel),USA pronunciationv.i., v.t.
to bellow like a stag in rutting time.
to bay, as a hunting dog.
the cry of a rutting stag or hunting dog.
1275–1325; Middle English bellen, Old English bellan to roar; cognate with Old High German bellan (German bellen to bark), Middle Dutch bellen, belen, Old Norse belja; akin to Lithuanian ba&descilde;sas voice, Sanskrit bhaṣ- bark, bhāṣ- speak. See bellow,belch
Bell(bel),USA pronunciationn.Ac•ton(ak′tən),USA pronunciation pen name of Anne Brontë.
BiographicalAlexander Graham, 1847–1922, U.S. scientist, born in Scotland: inventor of the telephone.
Biographical(Arthur) Clive (Howard), 1881–1964, English critic of literature and art.
Cur•rer(kûr′ər),USA pronunciation pen name of Charlotte Brontë.
BiographicalEllis, pen name of Emily Brontë.
BiographicalJohn, 1797–1869, U.S. political leader: Speaker of the House 1834–35.
Place Namesa city in SW California, near Los Angeles. 25,450.