Definitions for: Bell


[n] a hollow device made of metal that makes a ringing sound when struck
[n] the flared opening of a tubular device
[n] a percussion instrument consisting of vertical metal tubes of different lengths that are struck with a hammer
[n] a push button at an outer door that gives a ringing or buzzing signal when pushed
[n] the sound of a bell; "saved by the bell"
[n] American inventor of the telephone (1847-1922)
[n] English painter; sister of Virginia Woolf; prominent member of the Bloomsbury Group (1879-1961)
[n] the shape of a bell
[n] (nautical) each of the eight half-hour units of nautical time signaled by strokes of a ship's bell; eight bells signals 4:00, 8:00, or 12:00 o'clock, either a.m. or p.m.
[v] attach a bell to; "bell cows"



Webster (1913) Definition: Bell, n. [AS. belle, fr. bellan to bellow. See Bellow.]
1. A hollow metallic vessel, usually shaped somewhat like a
cup with a flaring mouth, containing a clapper or tongue,
and giving forth a ringing sound on being struck.

Note: Bells have been made of various metals, but the best
have always been, as now, of an alloy of copper and
tin.

The Liberty Bell, the famous bell of the Philadelphia State
House, which rang when the Continental Congress declared
the Independence of the United States, in 1776. It had
been cast in 1753, and upon it were the words ``Proclaim
liberty throughout all the land, to all the inhabitants
thereof.''

2. A hollow perforated sphere of metal containing a loose
ball which causes it to sound when moved.

3. Anything in the form of a bell, as the cup or corol of a
flower. ``In a cowslip's bell I lie.'' --Shak.

4. (Arch.) That part of the capital of a column included
between the abacus and neck molding; also used for the
naked core of nearly cylindrical shape, assumed to exist
within the leafage of a capital.

5. pl. (Naut.) The strikes of the bell which mark the time;
or the time so designated.

Note: On shipboard, time is marked by a bell, which is struck
eight times at 4, 8, and 12 o'clock. Half an hour after
it has struck ``eight bells'' it is struck once, and at
every succeeding half hour the number of strokes is
increased by one, till at the end of the four hours,
which constitute a watch, it is struck eight times.

To bear away the bell, to win the prize at a race where the
prize was a bell; hence, to be superior in something.
--Fuller.

To bear the bell, to be the first or leader; -- in allusion
to the bellwether or a flock, or the leading animal of a
team or drove, when wearing a bell.

To curse by bell, book, and candle, a solemn form of
excommunication used in the Roman Catholic church, the
bell being tolled, the book of offices for the purpose
being used, and three candles being extinguished with
certain ceremonies. --Nares.

To lose the bell, to be worsted in a contest. ``In single
fight he lost the bell.'' --Fairfax.

To shake the bells, to move, give notice, or alarm. --Shak.

Note: Bell is much used adjectively or in combinations; as,
bell clapper; bell foundry; bell hanger; bell-mouthed;
bell tower, etc., which, for the most part, are
self-explaining.

Bell arch (Arch.), an arch of unusual form, following the
curve of an ogee.

Bell cage, or Bell carriage (Arch.), a timber frame
constructed to carry one or more large bells.

Bell cot (Arch.), a small or subsidiary construction,
frequently corbeled out from the walls of a structure, and
used to contain and support one or more bells.

Bell deck (Arch.), the floor of a belfry made to serve as a
roof to the rooms below.

Bell founder, one whose occupation it is to found or cast
bells.

Bell foundry, or Bell foundery, a place where bells are
founded or cast.

Bell gable (Arch.), a small gable-shaped construction,
pierced with one or more openings, and used to contain
bells.

Bell glass. See Bell jar.

Bell hanger, a man who hangs or puts up bells.

Bell pull, a cord, handle, or knob, connecting with a bell
or bell wire, and which will ring the bell when pulled.
--Aytoun.

Bell punch, a kind of conductor's punch which rings a bell
when used.

Bell ringer, one who rings a bell or bells, esp. one whose
business it is to ring a church bell or chime, or a set of
musical bells for public entertainment.

Bell roof (Arch.), a roof shaped according to the general
lines of a bell.

Bell rope, a rope by which a church or other bell is rung.


Bell tent, a circular conical-topped tent.

Bell trap, a kind of bell shaped stench trap.


Bell, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Belled; p. pr. & vb. n.
Belling.]
To put a bell upon; as, to bell the cat.

2. To make bell-mouthed; as, to bell a tube.


Bell, v. i.
To develop bells or corollas; to take the form of a bell; to
blossom; as, hops bell.


Bell, v. t. [AS. bellan. See Bellow.]
To utter by bellowing. [Obs.]


Bell, v. i.
To call or bellow, as the deer in rutting time; to make a
bellowing sound; to roar.

As loud as belleth wind in hell. --Chaucer.

The wild buck bells from ferny brake. --Sir W.
Scott.

Synonyms: Alexander Bell, Alexander Graham Bell, bell shape, buzzer, campana, chime, doorbell, gong, ship's bell, Vanessa Bell, Vanessa Stephen

See Also: acoustic device, angelus, angelus bell, artificer, attach, Bloomsbury Group, blunderbuss, button, carillon, cascabel, church bell, clapper, cowbell, curve, curved shape, death bell, death knell, dinner bell, discoverer, electric bell, fire bell, funnel, handbell, inventor, knell, Liberty Bell, night bell, opening, painter, percussion instrument, percussive instrument, push, push button, school bell, sheep bell, shop bell, signaling device, sleigh bell, sound, sound bow, time unit, tocsin, tongue, unit of time, warning bell, wind, wind instrument

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