- any of various games in which a heavy ball is rolled down a special alley, usually made of wood, at a group of wooden pins, esp the games of tenpin bowling (tenpins) and skittles (ninepins)
- the game of bowls
- the act of delivering the ball to the batsman
WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2019
- Sportany of several games in which players roll balls at standing objects:Bowling was their favorite pastime on Saturday nights.
- Sportany of several games in which players standing at one end of an alley or green roll balls at standing objects or toward a mark at the other end, esp. a game in which a heavy ball is rolled from one end of a wooden alley at wooden pins set up at the opposite end. Cf. boccie, candlepin (def. 2), duckpin (def. 2), lawn bowling, ninepin (def. 2), tenpin (def. 2).
- Sportthe game of bowls.
- Sportan act or instance of playing or participating in any such game:Bowling is a pleasant way to exercise.
- bowl2 + -ing1 1525–35
- Ceramicsa deep, round dish or basin, used chiefly for holding liquids, etc.:Mix the vegetables in the bowl.
- the contents of a bowl:a bowl of cherries.
- a rounded, cuplike, hollow part: the bowl of a pipe.
- a stadium:At the Hollywood Bowl we watched the football game.
bowl2 /boʊl/USA pronunciation n.
- Sport[countable] a heavy ball used in lawn bowling.
- Sportbowls, [uncountable; used with a singular verb]
sclawn bowling :He tried to play bowls but he wasn't any good.
- Sport[countable] a delivery of the ball in bowling or lawn bowling.
- Sport to play at bowling or lawn bowling:[no object]He likes to bowl (or go bowling) on Saturday night.
- to roll the ball in bowling, or attain by bowling:[~ + object]He bowled the ball smoothly down the lane. She bowls a good game.
- bowl over,
- to surprise greatly: [~ + object + over]That news really bowled us over.[~ + over + object]The news really bowled over her friends.
- to knock down by crashing into: [~ + object + over]He nearly bowled us over on his way past.[~ + over + object]He bowled over the fence and flowers.
- a rather deep, round dish or basin, used chiefly for holding liquids, food, etc.
- the contents of a bowl:a bowl of tomato soup.
- a rounded, cuplike, hollow part:the bowl of a pipe.
- Ceramicsa large drinking cup.
- festive drinking;
- any bowl-shaped depression or formation.
- an edifice with tiers of seats forming sides like those of a bowl, having the arena at the bottom;
- SportAlso called bowl game. a football game played after the regular season by teams selected by the sponsors of the game, usually as representing the best from a region of the country:the Rose Bowl.
- Printing[Typography.]a curved or semicircular line of a character, as of a, d, b, etc.
- Buildingto give (a floor) a gentle inclination on all sides toward some area, as a stage or platform.
- bef. 950; Middle English bolle, Old English bolla; cognate with Old Norse bolli. See boll
bowl2 (bōl),USA pronunciation n.
- Sportone of the balls, having little or no bias, used in playing ninepins or tenpins.
- Sportone of the biased or weighted balls used in lawn bowling.
- Sportbowls, (used with a sing. v.) See lawn bowling.
- Sporta delivery of the ball in bowling or lawn bowling.
- (formerly) a rotating cylindrical part in a machine, as one to reduce friction.
- Sportto play at bowling or bowls;
participate in or have a game or games of bowling.
- Sportto roll a bowl or ball.
- to move along smoothly and rapidly.
- Sport[Cricket.]to deliver the ball to be played by the batsman.
- to roll or trundle, as a ball or hoop.
- Sportto attain by bowling:He bowls a good game. She usually bowls a 120 game, but today she bowled 180.
- to knock or strike, as by the ball in bowling (usually fol. by over or down).
- to carry or convey, as in a wheeled vehicle.
- Sport[Cricket.]to eliminate (a batsman) by bowling (usually fol. by out):He was bowled for a duck. He was bowled out for a duck.
- bowl over, to surprise greatly:We were bowled over by the news.
- Latin bulla bubble, knob; compare boil1, bola
- Middle French
- late Middle English bowle, variant of boule 1375–1425
- a round container open at the top, used for holding liquid, keeping fruit, serving food, etc
- Also: bowlful the amount a bowl will hold
- the rounded or hollow part of an object, esp of a spoon or tobacco pipe
- any container shaped like a bowl, such as a sink or lavatory
- chiefly US a bowl-shaped building or other structure, such as a football stadium or amphitheatre
- a bowl-shaped depression of the land surface
- literary a drinking cup
- a wooden ball used in the game of bowls, having flattened sides, one side usually being flatter than the other in order to make it run on a curved course
- a large heavy ball with holes for gripping with the fingers and thumb, used in tenpin bowling
- to roll smoothly or cause to roll smoothly, esp by throwing underarm along the ground
- (intransitive) usually followed by along: to move easily and rapidly, as in a car
- to send (a ball) down the pitch from one's hand towards the batsman, keeping the arm straight while doing so
- Also: bowl out to dismiss (a batsman) by delivering a ball that breaks his wicket
- (intransitive) to play bowls or tenpin bowling
- (transitive) (in tenpin bowling) to score (a specified amount)
See also bowl over, bowlsEtymology: 15th Century: from French boule, ultimately from Latin bulla bubble