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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
cowl neck
▪ Fibreglass wheel pants were moulded and fitted to the landing gears and fake cowl flaps were attached to a re-worked AT-6 cowling.
▪ Fitting a cowl to a chimney may solve a drawing problem, but it may not.
▪ In front of the second dicky are the aforementioned fuel tank selector, cowl flap, cabin heat and air controls and parking brake.
▪ Is there a counterfeit cowl on the thrust reversers?
▪ Normally, cowls require considerable maintenance and possible replacement every ten years - a costly consequence of owning an oast.
▪ Rachaela dreamed of Adamus bending over her, his hair a black cowl.
▪ The other priests also stood and removed the cowls from over their heads.
▪ The priest wore a cowl over his head.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Cowl \Cowl\, n. [Cf. OF. cuvele, cuvel, dim. of F. cuve tub, vat, fr. L. cupa. See Cup.] A vessel carried on a pole between two persons, for conveyance of water.


Cowl \Cowl\ (koul), n. [AS. cuhle, cugle, cugele; cf. dial. G. kogel, gugel, OF. coule, goule; all fr. LL. cuculla, cucullus, fr. L. cucullus cap, hood; perh. akin to celare to conceal, cella cell. Cf. Cucullate.]

  1. A monk's hood; -- usually attached to the gown. The name was also applied to the hood and garment together.

    What differ more, you cry, than crown and cowl?

  2. A cowl-shaped cap, commonly turning with the wind, used to improve the draft of a chimney, ventilating shaft, etc.

  3. A wire cap for the smokestack of a locomotive.

  4. (aviation) a removable metal covering for an aircraft engine, providing streamlining to minimize wind resistance; -- also called cowling.

  5. a covering for a chimney or other ventilating shaft functioning to increase the draft.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English cule, from earlier cugele, from Late Latin cuculla "monk's cowl," variant of Latin cucullus "hood, cowl," which is of uncertain origin. Cowling is 1917 in the aircraft sense.


n. 1 A monk's hood or hooded robe 2 A mask that covers the majority of the head. 3 A thin protective covering over all or part of an engine; also cowling 4 A usually hood-shaped covering used to increase the draft of a chimney and prevent backflow. 5 (context nautical English) A ship's ventilator with a bell-shaped top which can be swivelled to catch the wind and force it below 6 (context nautical English) A vertical projection of a ship's funnel that directs the smoke away from the bridge 7 (context obsolete British English) A soe

  1. n. protective covering consisting of a metal part that covers the engine; "there are powerful engines under the hoods of new cars"; "the mechanic removed the cowling in order to repair the plane's engine" [syn: hood, bonnet, cowling]

  2. a loose hood or hooded robe (as worn by a monk)

  3. v. cover with or as with a cowl; "cowl the boys and veil the girls"


The cowl (from the Latin cuculla, meaning "a hood") is an item of clothing consisting of a long, hooded garment with wide sleeves. Originally it may have referred simply to the hooded portion of a cloak. In contemporary usage, however, it is distinguished from a cloak or cape (cappa) by the fact that it refers to an entire closed garment. Today it is worn primarily by most Catholic and Anglican monks when participating in liturgical services.

Developed during the early Middle Ages in Northern Europe, they became the formal garment for those in monastic life. Originally they were worn simply to give greater warmth than would an open cloak to people who regularly spent long hours in unheated and draughty churches.

Cowl (novel)

Cowl is a 2004 science fiction novel by Neal Asher. The novel deals with time travel and an epic time war between two factions from the 43rd century. Asher first started working on the novel as a novella named Cowl At The Beginning, which he eventually developed into the full novel Cowl.

Cowl (disambiguation)

A cowl may refer to:

  • Cowl, a garment worn by monks
  • Cowl or cowling, a removable protective covering over all or part of an engine
  • Cowl (chimney), a device fitted to a chimney pot to prevent wind blowing the smoke back down into the room beneath
  • Cowl (oast), the revolving device found on oasts, maltings, and breweries
  • Cowl unit, a body style for locomotives
Cowl (oast)

A cowl is a device used on a kiln to keep the weather out of and to induce a flow of air through the kiln. They are normally associated with oasts but can also be found on breweries ( Letheringsett, Norfolk), maltings ( Ware, Hertfordshire; Hadlow, Kent) and watermills ( East Linton, East Lothian).

Cowl (chimney)

A cowl is a usually hood-shaped covering used to increase the draft of a chimney and prevent backflow. The cowl, usually made of galvanized iron, is fitted to the chimney pot to prevent wind blowing the smoke back down into the room below. Undoubtedly named after the resemblance of many designs to the cowl garment worn by monks, they have been in use for centuries.

When using an open fire to heat a room the smoke rises through a flue to a chimney pot on the roof. Under normal conditions the warm air from the fire will rise up the chimney emitting the smoke with it and dispersing it at rooftop level where it is less of a nuisance.

In strong winds the pressure of the wind may overwhelm the updraft and push the airflow in reverse down the flue. Smoke will then fill the room it is intended to heat posing a health and fire risk, causing discomfort and dirtying furnishings in its path.

When raw coal rather than smokeless fuel is burnt, the amount of smoke may be considerable and measures to prevent backflow occurring are a necessity.

A secondary function is to prevent birds and squirrels from nesting in the chimney. They often also act as a rain guard to keep rain from going down the chimney. A metal wire mesh is sometimes added as a spark arrestor. Wooden cowls were used on oasts to prevent the ingress of rain into kilns, and create a flow of air through the kiln.

A H-style cap (cowl) is a chimney top constructed from chimney pipes shaped like the letter H. It is an age-old method to regulate draft in situations where prevailing winds or turbulence cause downdraft and backpuffing. Although the H-cap has a distinctive advantage over most other downdraft caps, it fell out of favor because of its bulky looks. It is found mainly in marine use but has been gaining popularity again for its energy saving functionality. The H-cap stabilizes the draft rather than increasing it. Other downdraft caps are based on the Venturi effect, solving downdraft problems by increasing the updraft constantly resulting in much higher fuel consumption.

Usage examples of "cowl".

And inside the trunk are mail leggings, cowl, mittens, boots, and a leather aketon for protection underneath.

In the dreamlet, her human figure conjured a bucket of red paint and flung it at the cowled Ghina figure.

Then the monster had risen to its feet and had begun to walk leisurely to and fro across the common among the few fugitives, with its headlike hood turning about exactly like the head of a cowled human being.

Ohmsfords, when the stranger reached up and pulled back the cowl of his cloak to reveal clearly the dark face, now framed by long black hair, cut nearly shoulder length and shading the deep-set eyes, which still showed only as black slits in the shadows beneath the heavy brows.

I was in, this confirmed me in the belief that my idea of taking the cowl had been a Divine inspiration.

I am sure the abbot will not refuse me the cowl if I give him ten thousand crowns for my support.

Scowling, Kesk lifted his head, pushed back his cowl, and finally had the satisfaction of seeing someone flinch.

Nina Malapert, anonymous in the ubiquitous mourning black, her pink mohawk subdued under a heavy black cowl, shouldered her way through the packed crowds, not even glancing at the street.

Indeed, as I climaxed noisily, it seemed to me that one of these figures, cowled and sinister, detached itself from the fresco and moved shadowily away into the trees.

Shortly after, a figure dressed in the habit of a Simonite, with the hood of his cowl pulled up over his head, carried a basket of dirty laundry out of the back door of the roadhouse.

Her dark blue cloak was draped around her, like the shadows had been around Sor na Shannen, but her cowl rested along her shoulders, and the blackness of her hair, drawn back, still framed her white face, her violet eyes.

On one, a turbojet engine blasted loose of its mount and tumbled away, bouncing down the mountainside trailing smoke and white-hot shreds of its cowling, and the gunship spun half out of control.

The younger shifted nervously like Wynn, while his mature companion remained as still as the third priest in front with his cowl still up.

When the woman glanced toward Wynn, her cowled companion noticed and did likewise.

Before the noise was finished, Vassa Bassa was on his feet, pulling his cowl over head and horns.