Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
An apron is an outer protective garment that covers primarily the front of the body. It may be worn for hygienic reasons as well as in order to protect clothes from wear and tear, or else due to a symbolic meaning.
The apron is commonly part of the uniform of several work categories, including waitresses, nurses, and domestic workers. Many homemakers also wear them. It is also worn as a decorative garment by women. Aprons are also worn in many commercial establishments to protect workers clothes from damage, mainly bib aprons, but also others such as blacksmith or farrier aprons.
In addition to cloth, aprons can be made from a variety of materials. Rubber aprons are commonly used by persons working with dangerous chemicals, and lead aprons are commonly worn by persons such as X-ray technicians who work near radiation. Aprons, such as those used by carpenters, may have many pockets to hold tools. Waterproof household aprons, made of oilcloth or PVC are suitable for cooking and washing dishes.
The word apron is from the metanalysis of the term "a napron" to "an apron". The original spelling of napron has been lost (from the Old Frenchnaperon; Modern Frenchnapperon).
An apron is an article of protective Western clothing.
Apron may also refer to:
- Airport apron, an area where aircraft are parked and serviced
- Apron in architecture, a raised section of ornamental stonework below a window ledge, stone tablet or monument
- Apron, an area of pavement on a motorsport circuit that separates the racing surface from the infield.
- Apron, the flexible lower container of the air cushion of a hovercraft, also known as its skirt
- Apron, a ramp used to connect shoreside facilities with a barge or ferry, also known as a linkspan
- Apron stage, a part of a stage that extends past the proscenium arch and into the audience or seating area
- Dudou, a Chinese undergarment and blouse sometimes known as an apron
- Elongated labia minora
- The "luxury tax apron", a feature of the NBA salary cap
- Zingel asper, a species of fish sometimes known as an apron
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Apron \A"pron\ ([=a]"p[u^]rn or [=a]"pr[u^]n; 277), n. [OE. napron, OF. naperon, F. napperon, dim. of OF. nape, F. nappe, cloth, tablecloth, LL. napa, fr. L. mappa, napkin, table napkin. See Map.]
An article of dress, of cloth, leather, or other stuff, worn on the fore part of the body, to keep the clothes clean, to defend them from injury, or as a covering. It is commonly tied at the waist by strings.
Something which by its shape or use suggests an apron; as,
The fat skin covering the belly of a goose or duck. [Prov. Eng.]
A piece of leather, or other material, to be spread before a person riding on an outside seat of a vehicle, to defend him from the rain, snow, or dust; a boot. ``The weather being too hot for the apron.''
(Gun.) A leaden plate that covers the vent of a cannon.
(Shipbuilding) A piece of carved timber, just above the foremost end of the keel.
A platform, or flooring of plank, at the entrance of a dock, against which the dock gates are shut.
A flooring of plank before a dam to cause the water to make a gradual descent.
(Mech.) The piece that holds the cutting tool of a planer.
(Plumbing) A strip of lead which leads the drip of a wall into a gutter; a flashing.
(Zo["o]l.) The infolded abdomen of a crab.
n. 1 An article of clothing worn over the front of the torso and/or legs for protection from spills. 2 A hard surface bordering a structure or area. 3 # The paved area of an airport, especially the area where aircraft park away from a terminal 4 # The spreading end of a driveway. 5 # The paved area below the yellow line on a race track. 6 # The loading, parking or roadway area immediately beside a railway station 7 # The portion of a stage extending towards the audience beyond the proscenium arch in a theatre. 8 The sides of a tree’s canopy. 9 The cap of a cannon; a piece of lead laid over the vent to keep the priming dry.
Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
mid-15c., faulty separation (as also in adder, umpire) of a napron (c.1300), from Old French naperon "small table-cloth," diminutive of nappe "cloth," from Latin mappa "napkin." Napron was still in use as recently as late 16c. The shift of Latin -m- to -n- was a tendency in Old French (conter from computare, printemps from primum, natte "mat, matting," from matta). Symbolic of "wife's business" from 1610s. Apron-string tenure was in reference to property held in virtue of one's wife, or during her lifetime only.Even at his age, he ought not to be always tied to his mother's apron string. [Anne Brontë, "The Tenant of Wildfell Hall," 1848]
n. a garment of cloth or leather or plastic that is tied about the waist and worn to protect your clothing
(golf) the part of the fairway leading onto the green
a paved surface where aircraft stand while not being used
Usage examples of "apron".
Coarse dorneck linen abraded her own fingers as she twisted them into the folds of her apron.
So were the cameras and the items needed to accessorize my ensemble: paper apron and mask, plastic goggles, latex gloves.
Shriveled and brittle, more brown than red-it took a moment for Addle to recognize it as the little bouquet she had once confiscated from Gillian Duncan, tucked into her apron and forgotten.
From the corner of my sight I watched Nick leave the bathroom, looking like the ailing vampire who was sitting beside me, trying to attract anyone in an apron.
In the end Axel wiped his hands on his apron and poured a cup of ale, sending it over with the boy, who peered at Julian hopefully from behind a curtain of sleek brown hair.
She sniffed it, grinned, then tucked it under the bib of her sooty white apron.
The footmen were neatly attired in bottle-green livery, while the maids wore dark gray dresses and snowy bibbed aprons and caps.
Cyd only had one foot over the threshold before Bosco tossed an apron at her head and told her start cooking.
Her old man does the valeting and butling, her ma cooks, and Elsie hands out the cap and apron dope.
In the company of Breslaw and Railly and several of the ceramicists, he was standing at a distance from her on the apron of the kiln building.
Here Flora had surely played a trick to plant golden genista against the intense sapphire blue of a Capri sea, and she must have emptied her apron all at once to have spangled the rough grass with cistus, anemone, and starry asphodel.
Lizy had on her best muslin delaine dress, her best embroidered pantalets, her black silk apron, and her flat straw hat with long blue ribbon streamers.
Amongst the pleasures and popular delectations, which wandered hither and thither, you might see the pompe of the goddesse triumphantly march forward : The woman attired in white vestiments, and rejoicing, in that they bare garlands and flowers upon their heads, bedspread the waies with hearbes, which they bare in their aprons, where this regall and devout procession should passe : Other caried glasses on their backes, to testifie obeisance to the goddess which came after.
And then she dropped the dormouse into the pocket of her apron and she clambered onto the caravan.
Lord Trevor, an apron around his waist, sleeves rolled up, rubbing polish on an epergne that was breathtaking in its ugliness.