One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1mass noun A soft, heavy, glossy kind of satin, usually of silk.as modifier ‘a mauve duchesse evening dress’
- ‘Another unique characteristic is the emergence of shiny materials, such as satin, silk, shantung and duchesse.’
- ‘She shares her wedding album with writer Hamish Bowles, finally allowing an outsider to see her in her gown, an ivory duchesse satin dress with an hourglass corset bodice and crinoline skirts.’
- ‘Her duchesse satin jacket has the potential to be one of the hits of the collection.’
- ‘The bride, given in marriage by her father Nickey, looked radiant in an ivory strapless duchesse satin dress with beaded neckline.’
- ‘The makers of white duchesse satin are upping production.’
2A chaise longue resembling two armchairs linked by a stool.
3A dressing table with a pivoting mirror.
- ‘I saw my self-esteem fading as I angled the duchesse mirror to contemplate the horror of my decayed teeth.’
Late 18th century (in duchesse (sense 2)): from French, literally ‘duchess’.
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