gown


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blue gown

1. A prostitute. The phrase derives from the blue gowns that convicted prostitutes once had to wear in houses of correction. Those poor blue gowns will have nowhere to turn when they're released, and most likely will end up here again.
2. A licensed beggar in Scotland (who traditionally wore a blue gown). If you don't take this job, you're going to end up a blue gown, begging on the streets!
See also: blue, gown

cap and gown

the academic cap or mortarboard and the robe worn in formal academic ceremonies. We all had to rent cap and gown for graduation. I appeared wearing my cap and gown, but I had shorts on underneath because it gets so hot at that time of year.
See also: and, cap, gown

town-and-gown

the relations between a town and the university located within the town; the relations between university students and the nonstudents who live in a university town. (Usually in reference to a disagreement. Fixed order.) There is another town-and-gown dispute in Adamsville over the amount the university costs the city for police services. There was more town-and-gown strife reported at Larry's Bar and Grill last Saturday night.

cap and gown

Ceremonial dress worn at graduation exercises; by extension, the academic community (also see town and gown. For example, Mary was very proud) when she received her cap and gown for commencement. [Mid-1800s]
See also: and, cap, gown

town and gown

The inhabitants of a college or university town and the students and personnel of the college, as in There used to be friction between town and gown but the new parking lots have eased it . The gown in this expression alludes to the academic robes traditional in British universities. [Early 1800s]
See also: and, gown, town

town-gown

Relations between a college and the municipality in which it is located. Students at British universities and boarding schools were fond of playing pranks on the inhabitants of the cities and towns where the schools were. However, not all the “pranks” were pranks: drunken carousing, theft, arson, and other crimes were done under the guise of boyish high spirits. These uneasy relations between town and “gown” (students wore academic robes, as in “cap and gown”) happened in this country too, and there are still times when a mayor and a college dean meet to try and smooth ruffled feathers.
References in classic literature ?
The gown hung loosely over Little John's shoulders and came only to his waist.
So Little John clambered awkwardly into the quire, his short gown fluttering gaily; and he called the banns for the marriage of the maid and Allan-a-Dale once, twice, and thrice.
That's not enough," said Robin; "your gown is so short that you must talk longer.
I 've worn turned and dyed gowns all my days, and it don't seem to have alienated my friends, or injured my constitution.
Will made a verse one day which we thought pretty well for a little chap: 'To poor country folks Who have n't any clothes, Rich folks, to relieve them, Send old lace gowns and satin bows.
No, she thought it was n't the thing for a poor minister's girls to go flourishing about in second-hand finery, so she did what I 'm doing now, put away what would be useful and proper for us by and by, and let us play with the shabby, silk bonnets and dirty, flounced gowns.
When I heard this I prayed him on my knees that he would give me the use of his gown, which after many contentions he at last agreed to do, on my paying him three marks towards the regilding of the image of Laurence the martyr.
Stay though, my friend, it was his gown," objected Alleyne.
On this I plucked off the gown, and he with much show of haste did begin to undo his points; but when I threw his frock down he clipped it up and ran off all untrussed, leaving me in this sorry plight.
Her two little ones were to be as cupids by her side; while I in my gown and band, was to present her with my books on the Whistonian controversy.
And pluck'd his gown, to share the good man's smile.
Many of them cried out, "They thought what madam's silk gown would end in;" others spoke sarcastically of her learning.
And while the moralist, who is holding forth on the cover ( an accurate portrait of your humble servant), professes to wear neither gown nor bands, but only the very same long-eared livery in which his congregation is arrayed: yet, look you, one is bound to speak the truth as far as one knows it, whether one mounts a cap and bells or a shovel hat; and a deal of disagreeable matter must come out in the course of such an undertaking.
Round the room hang I don't know how many generations of Crawleys, some with beards and ruffs, some with huge wigs and toes turned out, some dressed in long straight stays and gowns that look as stiff as towers, and some with long ringlets, and oh, my dear
The jewels which encircled her neck were priceless and dazzling; the soft material of her gown, the most delicate shade of sea green, seemed to foam about her feet, a wonderful triumph of allegoric dressmaking.