- a woven strip or band of fine material, as silk or rayon, varying in width and finished off at the edges, used for ornament, tying, etc.
- material in such strips.
- anything resembling or suggesting a ribbon or woven band.
- a band of inked material used in a typewriter, adding machine, etc., that supplies ink for printing the figure on the striking typeface onto the paper beneath.
- a strip of material, as satin or rayon, being or representing a medal or similar decoration, especially a military one: an overseas ribbon.
- torn or ragged strips; shreds: clothes torn to ribbons.
- reins for driving.
- a long, thin flexible band of metal, as for a spring, a band saw, or a tapeline.
- Also riband, ribband, Also called ledger, ledger board, ribbon strip. Carpentry. a thin horizontal piece let into studding to support the ends of joists.
- Architecture. came2.
- Also riband, ribband. Nautical. a distinctive narrow band or stripe painted along the exterior of a hull.
- Shipbuilding. ribband1(def 1).
verb (used with object)
- to adorn with ribbon.
- to mark with something suggesting ribbon.
- to separate into ribbonlike strips.
verb (used without object)
- to form in ribbonlike strips.
- a narrow strip of fine material, esp silk, used for trimming, tying, etc
- something resembling a ribbon; a long stripa ribbon of land
- a long thin flexible band of metal used as a graduated measure, spring, etc
- a long narrow strip of ink-impregnated cloth for making the impression of type characters on paper in a typewriter or similar device
- (plural) ragged strips or shreds (esp in the phrase torn to ribbons)
- a small strip of coloured cloth signifying membership of an order or award of military decoration, prize, or other distinction
- a small, usually looped, strip of coloured cloth worn to signify support for a charity or causea red AIDS ribbon
- to adorn with a ribbon or ribbons
- to mark with narrow ribbon-like marks
- to reduce to ribbons; tear into strips
early 14c., ribane, from Old French riban “a ribbon,” variant of ruban (13c.), of unknown origin, possibly from a Germanic compound whose second element is related to band (n.1); cf. Middle Dutch ringhband “necklace.” Modern spelling is from mid-16c. Originally a stripe in a material. Custom of colored ribbon loops worn on lapels to declare support for some group perceived as suffering or oppressed began in 1991 with AIDS red ribbons.