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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 mortarboard and robe traditionally worn during academic ceremonies, especially graduation. All graduates need to be here in cap and gown at 9 AM tomorrow.
See also: and, cap, 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


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 and gown

non-members and members of a university in a particular place.
The gown is the academic dress worn by university members, now required only on ceremonial or formal occasions. The distinction between town and gown was made in these specific terms in early 19th-century Oxford and Cambridge, but the traditional hostility between the native inhabitants of the two cities and the incoming students has been a long-standing phenomenon, as is evidenced by the St Scholastica's Day riot in Oxford in 1354 .
See also: and, gown, town


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 periodicals archive ?
This standard utilized new terminology for barrier performance of gowns and assessed barrier protection levels by specifying test methods and performance results necessary to verify and validate the newly-defined levels of barrier protection.
There was an inevitable romantic ambience and the city of Verona was the perfect location to bring this gown to life with a Romeo and Giulietta feel-- hence the name of the gown itself.
The wedding gown of your dreams is but a drawing away.
So much thought goes into selecting a wedding gown, but once the celebration is over, the dress begins to fade into the background.
Last year, the Cleveland Clinic embarked on a four-month trial to yield feedback on a gown that is now in production.
A mother's chiffon wedding gown rescued from a tree in the aftermath of a tornado becomes a daughter's dream dress.
As with the wearing of gowns, the gloves will protect the wearer from exposure to blood and body fluids (Radcliffe et al 2004, Tanner 2008).
Very often when people are admitted to hospital they don't have enough time to bring some pajamas or a dressing gown with them and are instead forced to wear hospital gowns," said director Katherine Murphy.
Best Actress winner Kate Winslet admitted she had tried three stylists before settling on Yves St Laurent's Stefano Pilati to create her black and midnight blue gown.
One of the most stunning gowns belonged to fashion supernova Jennifer Lopez.
Primark issued a product recall notice over women's dressing gowns labelled Secret Possessions, style no.
What the women fashion with their careful stitches are infant burial gowns and blankets, preemie day gowns, bonnets, booties and "lovie dolls.
Brabham has a collection of 100 vintage wedding gowns.