One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A pleasant shady place under trees or climbing plants in a garden or wood.
- ‘Like the gardens and bowers from which it borrows its imagery, it is a place of ‘arrest,’ cut off from the world but paradoxically containing all the world in its ‘essentials,’ purified by the imagination.’
- ‘It was almost like standing in the shade and bower of a great tree; his superior size and strength did not terrify her, as had so many things of late.’
- ‘And in the bowers of the fields and verges, we hear them in our restless sleep, in mirth.’
- ‘The evocation of a mythic landscape recalls elements of a child's tree house and the bower in Milton's Paradise Lost.’
- ‘They are framed by a bower of leafy trees, a placid lake and a glorious orange sunset.’
- ‘The fast growing willow can be fashioned into a wide variety of garden features, such as bowers, arches and screens, and the technique is simple and easy to learn.’
- ‘The party dashed beneath the bowers of the first trees and all of them collapsed onto the ground, breathing heavily.’
- ‘Washington's secluded bower in the woods is similar to Wordsworth's natural ‘place’ of liberated selfhood.’
- ‘Though critics have proposed that this description evokes the coal's origins, the depiction of the primordial forest also stems from Endymion's forests and bowers, the bowers that I have noted foster desire.’
- ‘Ayamu had been tempted to remove it, but for had decided to spare the tree, for it would serve as a bower for the vine he had brought with him from his farm in the Nile Delta.’
- ‘The daytime temperature reached ninety degrees, and the feverish Clark was moved from the stifling leather lodge to a more comfortable shaded bower the crew made for him.’
- ‘Nature offers to her children pleasures without end; Rosy dawns and golden sunsets, fields and forest bowers; Hills, mountains, streams and meadows, gardens, birds and flowers.’
- ‘A bower of stone was constructed around a thick linden tree.’
- ‘And it begins there, in part, because the people we wed or gave birth to while angels sang ‘Peace on earth’ above our bowers are free to grow beyond their roles and beyond our expectations.’
- ‘The gardens are still evolving as volunteers continue work on a nature pond and willow bower.’
- ‘The spring appeared in a bower of roadside greenery.’
- ‘There are a great many mountains, valleys, streams, villages, caves, residences, grottos, bowers, fields, high roads, low roads, and along them the Hobbits and their larger companions travel while paying great attention to mealtimes.’
- ‘A bridge over a stream leads beneath a bower of pink roses into a frothy maze of flower-strewn pathways and rose-covered arbours.’
- ‘Entering the shady bower of the trees, Jerica sped down the path, pushing all thoughts of dreams and golden eyes away as she exercised.’
- ‘The sand here is stabilised by conifers but the suntrap path was illuminated by heavy bowers of broom and numerous orchids white to deepest purple.’
- ‘Larin and his followers made their way to a bower that had apparently been crafted from living trees, bent patiently so that they grew to form a large house.’
- 1.1literary A summerhouse or country cottage.
- ‘In the bower with his Welsh wife, Mortimer fumes impotently: ‘This is the deadly spite that angers me - / My wife can speak no English, and I no Welsh.’’
- ‘This is implicit when, in the Restoration Scene, he spies the young lovers playing chess in their bower, working out - in seclusion since their love is private - their own destinies as well, or as ill, as they are able.’
- ‘Their laughter and verve has made the stale hall a vibrant bower and even the air conditioning plant is cooler.’
- ‘Hark, what noise is that sounding in our bower of delight?’
- ‘That illusion was quickly dispelled, and Bella had retreated into her own bower, leaving Elanor to grow up along separate lines.’
- ‘As the last embers in the pipe slowly died out, the trapper looked momentarily beyond his bower and saw the drifting snow covering the entrance.’
- ‘Before she unlocked the door to our soon-to-be bower of bliss, we embraced and kissed.’
- ‘Then, as I reclined in my bower, the fairies sang to me, and Oberon entered slowly, playing a soft rounded melody that interwove with their song, unnoticed by my eager guards.’
- 1.2literary A lady's private room or bedroom.
Shade or enclose (a place or person)‘the bowered pathways into the tangle of vines’
- ‘Meanwhile, his body lay in an open coffin bowered in flowers in the Paris house.’
- ‘The scenery was a pleasant diversion from Sister Blanda's conversation: a succession of tidy olive-groves and villas bowered in cypress.’
- ‘One of the beauties of Sintra, though, is that you can escape the crowds, literally within a minute, by veering off on one of the bowered paths leading up the Serra.’
- ‘Seek shade and seclusion in your own gorgeous garden after examining these bowered garden ideas.’
Old English būr ‘dwelling, inner room’, of Germanic origin; related to German Bauer ‘birdcage’.
Each of two anchors carried at a ship's bow.
- ‘The small bower anchor was also used for anchoring the Victory in deep waters.’
- ‘Then came the best bower and the small bower (so called from being carried on the bows).’
- ‘The remaining four were bower anchors mounted on bulwarks in the bow for use.’
Late 15th century: from bow + -er.
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