Definition of blue riband in English:

blue riband


  • 1A ribbon of blue silk given to the winner of a competition or as a mark of great distinction.

    • ‘You don't see professors handing out blue ribbons to MFAs every time they get subect-verb agreement right.’
    • ‘Several won blue ribbons for excellence in our annual student art snow, and one was included in the annual Scholastic Art Award competition.’
    • ‘It appears that the university's student awards office had been counting the blue ribbons won by each cow and pig as students with scholarships attending the university.’
    • ‘She has also won many gold and silver medals for gymnastics and many blue ribbons for equestrian.’
    • ‘My mother's fridge takes the blue ribbon, however, because on hers she displays what might possibly be the largest photo of me ever made.’
    • ‘Nine-year-old Davey had won and proudly wore a blue ribbon declaring him the winner pinned to his overalls.’
    • ‘He raised chickens and turkeys for 4H, winning puffy blue ribbons for champion poultry two years running at the Colorado State Fair.’
    • ‘Most of these pictures, which won blue ribbons at the state fair, were portraits of the denizens of Hill 57.’
    • ‘The room was filled with innumerable awards, trophies, blue ribbons, award-winning essays and such.’
    • ‘Selecting roses which frequently appear on the competition trophy lists also increases ones chances of bringing home the blue ribbons.’
    • ‘I may learn to ride like the wind, win blue ribbons at horse shows and finally earn the right to put a saddle under me.’
    • ‘Cohen shows clips of Nordic festivals where toddlers are paraded half-nude before panels of judges so that the best physical children can be singled out for blue ribbons.’
    • ‘I had a room full of blue ribbons and books, just like now.’
    • ‘R. won't tell me how to do that because it's my recipe and once, about a thousand years ago, I won a blue ribbon with it.’
    • ‘They grow eight different kinds and have won blue ribbons from the Men's Garden Club of America.’
    • ‘Have an adult tally up the votes and make sure your winner gets a blue ribbon!’
    • ‘I like the tangible reward of a blue ribbon after I've subjected myself to the torture of riding without stirrups in an equitation class.’
    • ‘Secondly, having the adults award blue ribbons encouraged them to look much harder at the artworks than in the past.’
    • ‘To my delight I won a blue ribbon for my jam and curd, a red ribbon for my salsa and a white ribbon for my pickles.’
    • ‘Breeders desperate to take home the blue ribbons have been known to change the size and shape of cow udders, in an attempt to catch the judges' eye.’
    1. 1.1 A badge worn by members of the Order of the Garter.
      • ‘The Lesser George is gold and is situated at the bottom of the blue riband, or sash, worn over the shoulder.’
      • ‘Charles II. introduced the blue riband.’
      • ‘Each knight, or lady, also receives the glittering Garter Star and a blue riband bearing a smaller badge called the Lesser George - most of which they keep at home.’
  • 2A trophy for the ship making the fastest eastward sea crossing of the Atlantic Ocean on a regular commercial voyage.

    • ‘Although imaginary in itself, the Blue Riband offered immense tangible rewards.’
    • ‘Additionally, much to the company's joy, she had also held the Blue Riband for the fastest Atlantic crossing.’
    • ‘After the Queen Mary took the Blue Riband in 1936, John Brown's laid down the Queen Elizabeth, patently a troopship as much as a liner.’
    • ‘Turbines were adopted for both warships and passenger liners, helping Mauretania to hold the blue riband of the Atlantic for many years.’
    • ‘The heavily subsidized SS United States went into mothballs less than 15 years after it seized the coveted Blue Riband for crossing the Atlantic in record time in 1952.’


North American
  • 1attributive Of the highest quality; first-class.

    ‘blue-ribbon service’
    • ‘If you're an advertiser, be assured your message is reaching the right target: blue-ribbon, solid-gold dealers.’
    • ‘The team's plan to spice up their offense follows a blue-ribbon recipe: Have their newcomer run deep, deep, deep and make defenders chase him.’
    • ‘Yes, he must have been the instructors’ prized, blue-ribbon pet.’
    • ‘Fishing is pretty much limited to goldeye, sauger, and catfish, and in a state full of blue-ribbon trout streams, who cares for that?’
    • ‘It's a blue ribbon school in Detroit, the best in the city.’
    • ‘During the 1998-99 school year, the school achieved national recognition as a Blue Ribbon School.’
    • ‘Between these continuing reports and word of her ballooning figure, I'm beginning to think we treat blue-ribbon cattle better than Hollywood actresses!’
    • ‘Instead of showcasing my bead proudly like I do my gourd drum (that sits radiantly in my office like a blue-ribbon pig at the 4H contest), I keep my little bead hidden away in my desk, under heaps and heaps of files and manila folders.’
    • ‘Hesiod brags of prizes won, the blue-ribbon poem of a pedigree at the county-fair, coarse-woven and straw-capped.’
    • ‘Photos of blue-ribbon steers decorate the ‘steakhouse,’ the location for the shabbily conventional retirement party.’
    • ‘There are blue-ribbon pies and bushels of apples and you can walk around and look at your fellow Americans perspiring in their shorts and T-shirts.’
    • ‘You'll be hailed as the blue-ribbon bistro chef of the backcountry.’
    • ‘Fort Foote was among 263 public and private schools throughout the nation that was designated as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence by the U.S. Department of Education for the 2000-01 school year.’
  • 2attributive (of a jury or committee) specially selected.

    • ‘All this strengthens the case for an independent, blue-ribbon investigatory commission, as urged by the Senator.’
    • ‘As the articles point out, two blue-ribbon commissions have separately come to the same conclusion: our oceans are in trouble and the time for action is now.’
    • ‘After organizing a blue-ribbon committee to protest the fraud and demand a recount, he held massive demonstrations throughout the city and went to court.’
    • ‘They put together a blue-ribbon committee of advisers and actually let the advisers advise.’
    • ‘It has been a year, and despite all the big promises, the blue-ribbon commissions and the media hoopla, most states have not acted.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, we hear about low-level resignations, official investigations and proposals for blue-ribbon commissions.’
    • ‘To buttress her case, she then cites ‘a blue-ribbon commission’ that recommended pay-for-performance for New York City public schools.’
    • ‘And that's why I think we really need pressure from the outside, which I think is the best argument, ultimately, for there to be one of these big, blue-ribbon commissions.’
    • ‘Like all blue-ribbon panels, the commission is an august body comprised almost entirely of government officials and industry representatives, all of whom take their work very seriously.’
    • ‘On August 30, the blue-ribbon grand jury returned its first indictments - 545 indictments against 59 people were announced that day.’
    • ‘The blue-ribbon committee charged with developing a new tax policy for the Internet crashed and burned last week.’
    • ‘He seems genuinely surprised, much after the fashion of people of goodwill who sit on government blue-ribbon commissions everywhere.’
    • ‘The Alabama Legislature has created a blue-ribbon committee to study the state's health care ‘crisis.’’
    • ‘He did it most notably in 1996, when he chaired a blue-ribbon commission appointed by the Senate Finance Committee, which concluded that the consumer price index overstated inflation.’
    • ‘This involves a series of blue-ribbon panels compromising on asset allocation choices and then eliminating 90% of the stocks and bonds traded in the United States for one political reason or another.’
    • ‘The new governor has convened a blue-ribbon panel to investigate prison abuse and has released more convicted murderers in his first five months than his predecessor did in his entire five years.’
    • ‘Then, they would impose a new economic system based on the recommendations of the commissioner's blue-ribbon panel on baseball economics.’
    • ‘Last year, Marshall appointed a blue-ribbon commission to advise her about the courts' management problems.’
    • ‘Educating the public went beyond service on blue-ribbon committees on the city's future.’
    • ‘And now a lot of conservatives are coming forward and saying, we need a blue-ribbon commission.’


blue riband

/ˌbluː ˈrɪbənd/