• WordNet 3.6
    • n tunic any of a variety of loose fitting cloaks extending to the hips or knees
    • n tunic an enveloping or covering membrane or layer of body tissue
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The kilt was invented by a English gentleman who came to Scotland to open a factory because he got tired of his Scottish workers showing up in a long tunic with a belt (they couldn't afford pants). Rather than raise wages so they could afford pants he invented the kilt which is just a lot of fabric and they could afford that. The kilt did not become a symbol of clan pride until the English banned the kilt in Scotland. Then it became part of national pride to wear the newly invented clan plaids.
    • Tunic (Anat) A membrane, or layer of tissue, especially when enveloping an organ or part, as the eye.
    • Tunic (Bot) A natural covering; an integument; as, the tunic of a seed.
    • Tunic (Rom. Antiq) An under-garment worn by the ancient Romans of both sexes. It was made with or without sleeves, reached to or below the knees, and was confined at the waist by a girdle.
    • Tunic Any similar garment worn by ancient or Oriental peoples; also, a common name for various styles of loose-fitting under-garments and over-garments worn in modern times by Europeans and others.
    • Tunic (R. C. Ch) Same as Tunicle.
    • Tunic (Zoöl) See Mantle n., 3 .
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n tunic In Roman antiquity, a garment like a shirt or gown worn by either sex, very often an undergarment: hence a general term applied to garments, of all periods and materials, which are worn depending from the neck, whether girded at the waist or not, or kept in place by other garments worn outside of them, and whether such garments are long and full or short and scant. Thus, the name is given to the Greek chiton in its various forms, to the early English garment worn under the cloak, and even to the hauberk of mail. In the breast of the tunic of the ancient Roman senator a broad vertical stripe of purple (called latus clavus) was woven; the equites wore two narrow parallel stripes (called angusti clavi) extending from the shoulders to the bottom of the tunic. Hence the terms laticlavii and angusticlavii applied to persons of these orders. See also cut under stola.
    • n tunic At the present time, a garment generally loose, but gathered or girded at the waist, worn by women, usually an outer garment; a sort of wrap or coat for street wear.
    • n tunic Eccles., a vestment worn over the alb in the Roman Catholic Church and in some Anglican churches by the subdeacon or epistler at the celebration of the mass or holy communion. It is similar in shape and color to the dalmatic, but sometimes smaller and with less ornamentation. The bishop's tunic is worn under the dalmatic, and is shorter than the subdeacon's. See tunicle.
    • n tunic A military surcoat.
    • n tunic In the British army, the ordinary fatigue-coat: applied usually to the coat of a private, but sometimes to that of an officer.
    • n tunic A natural covering; an integument. Specifically— In anatomy, a covering or investing part; a tunicle; a coat, as of the eyeball, the stomach, or an artery. See tunica.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Tunic tū′nik a loose frock worn by females and boys: an ecclesiastical short-sleeved vestment, worn over the alb at mass by the sub-deacon, very similar to the dalmatic, but smaller: a military surcoat: the ordinary fatigue-coat of a private soldier, also the coat of an officer: :
    • n Tunic tū′nik (anat.) a membrane that covers some organ
    • n Tunic tū′nik (bot.) a covering, as of a seed
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. tunica,: cf. F. tunique,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. tunique—L. tunica, an under-garment of both sexes.


In literature:

All of the men's jerkins or tunics are made on the simple lines of a man's shirt, opened a little at the neck and belted in at the waist.
"Why the Chimes Rang: A Play in One Act" by Elizabeth Apthorp McFadden
She wore only her white tunic, and had pushed it back so that her arms were almost bare.
"A Friend of Caesar" by William Stearns Davis
Both attendants are dressed in a short tunic, a phillibeg, a belt, and a pointed helmet.
"The Seven Great Monarchies Of The Ancient Eastern World, Vol 2. (of 7): Assyria" by George Rawlinson
His tunic had been unbuttoned.
"Combed Out" by Fritz August Voigt
The women looked well in black woollen skirts and white tunics.
"Unknown Mexico, Volume 1 (of 2)" by Carl Lumholtz
One day Paul and Silas met a slave girl dressed in a flowing, coloured tunic.
"The Book of Missionary Heroes" by Basil Mathews
Yes; for every wound we get we have the right to wear a narrow strip of gold braid on the tunic sleeve.
"Private Peat" by Harold R. Peat
We noted the colour of their tunics and the blackness of the turbans.
"Indiscreet Letters From Peking"
There were practically no out-sizes in tunics, but plenty of the men were not merely out-size, but odd-sized.
""Over There" with the Australians" by R. Hugh Knyvett
The young man in the loose wrap-around tunic who entered was a stranger.
"Time Crime" by H. Beam Piper

In poetry:

Seven attendants round him vying,
In a lighter vesture plying,
Four with skirts, and other three
Tunic'd short from waist to knee.
"Lita of the Nile" by Richard Doddridge Blackmore
Shall gods be said to thump the clouds
When clouds are cursed by thunder,
Be said to weep when weather howls?
Shall rainbows be their tunics' colour?
"Shall gods be said to thump the clouds" by Dylan Thomas
What do you sell O ye merchants ?
Richly your wares are displayed.
Turbans of crimson and silver,
Tunics of purple brocade,
Mirrors with panels of amber,
Daggers with handles of jade.
"In The Bazaars of Hyderabad" by Sarojini Naidu
He wore twin stripes of gold upon
And empty tunic sleeve;
His eyes were blue, his face so young
One hardly cold believe
That he had seen the death and hate
That make the whole world grieve.
"The Kitchener Chap" by Anonymous British
"Oh! there's Sir Henry Dudster! Such a splendid leader!
How pleased he looks! What rows of ribbons on his tunic!
Such dignity…. Saluting…. (Wave your flag… now, Freda!)…
Yes, dear, I saw a Prussian General once,-at Munich.
"Return Of The Heroes" by Siegfried Sassoon
His hair was like a yellow flame about the bloated face,
The blood had stained his tunic from the fatal arrow-place.
Not good to look upon was he, in life, nor yet when dead.
The driver of the cart drove on, and never turned his head.
"The Death of William Rufus" by Robert Fuller Murray

In news:

This show, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, features some 30 tunics, including one from Peru, above, from A.D 800 to 850.
Marko Metzinger/Studio D. Throw on this breezy tunic with jeans or over a bathing suit.
It was assumed that the tunic was lost in the ashes.
There was a time, not so long ago, when "edgy" theater produced by young thespians in tiny black boxes was a hit-or-miss proposition, often involving tunics and more than a little angry posturing.
Tunic sweater continues to be popular.
The tunic style has been popular for a couple of seasons.
Tie-dye tunic by T Party, $65.
Looks by pairing pretty tunics with sleek leggings or slim-cut pants.
Adam Glassman says you can wear tunics to the office if paired with leggings or slim-cut pants.
Treated as dresses, tunics will cut you off at midthigh—not exactly office-appropriate, let alone, flattering.
This show, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, features some 30 tunics , including one from Peru, above, from A.D 800 to 850.
Andean Tunics at the Met.
The exhibition's 30 or so tunics come from the Textile Museum in Washington, the Cleveland Museum of Art and two private collections, as well as the Met's own holdings.
New Orleans Jazz Fest crowds basked in sounds from across the globe Saturday as Senegalese performer Cheikh Lô offered a performance as colorful and unique as his signature patchwork tunic.
Tie-dye tunic by T Party, $65.