• WordNet 3.6
    • n ribbon notion consisting of a narrow strip of fine material used for trimming
    • n ribbon a long strip of inked material for making characters on paper with a typewriter
    • n ribbon an award for winning a championship or commemorating some other event
    • n ribbon any long object resembling a thin line "a mere ribbon of land","the lighted ribbon of traffic","from the air the road was a grey thread","a thread of smoke climbed upward"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Some Ribbon worm will eat themselves if they cannot find food. This type of worm can still survive after eating up to 95% of its body weight
    • Ribbon (Her) A bearing similar to the bend, but only one eighth as wide.
    • Ribbon A fillet or narrow woven fabric, commonly of silk, used for trimming some part of a woman's attire, for badges, and other decorative purposes.
    • Ribbon A narrow strip or shred; as, a steel or magnesium ribbon; sails torn to ribbons.
    • Ribbon (Spinning) A silver.
    • Ribbon Driving reins.
    • Ribbon (Shipbuilding) Same as Rib-band.
    • v. t Ribbon To adorn with, or as with, ribbons; to mark with stripes resembling ribbons.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Historically, a blue ribbon has been awarded for first prize
    • n ribbon Originally, a stripe in a material, or the band or border of a garment, whether woven in the stuff or applied.
    • n ribbon A strip of fine stuff, as silk, satin, or velvet, having two selvages. Ribbons in this sense seem to have been introduced in the sixteenth century. Ordinarily ribbons are made of widths varying from one fourth of an inch, or perhaps even less, to seven or eight inches, but occasionally sash-ribbons or the like are made of much greater widths. According to the fashion of the day, ribbons are made richly figured or brocaded, of corded silk with velvet and satin stripes, satin-faced on each side, the two sides being of different colors, each perfect, and in many other styles.
    • n ribbon Specifically, the honorary distinction of an order of knighthood, usually in two forms: first, the broad ribbon, denoting the highest class of such an order (for which see cordon, 7); second, the small knot of ribbon worn in the buttonhole by members of an order when not wearing the cross or other badge. Blue ribbon and red ribbon are often used to denote the orders of the Garter and Bath respectively. A blue ribbon was also a badge of the Order of the Holy Ghost in France. Compare cordon bleu, under cordon.
    • n ribbon That which resembles a ribbon in shape; a long and narrow strip of anything.
    • n ribbon plural Reins for driving.
    • n ribbon A strip; a shred: as, the sails were torn to ribbons.
    • n ribbon In spinning, a continuous strand of cotton or other fiber in a loose, untwisted condition; a sliver.
    • n ribbon In metal-working, a long, thin strip of metal, such as a watch-spring
    • n ribbon a thin steel band for a belt, or an endless saw
    • n ribbon a thin band of magnesium for burning
    • n ribbon a thin steel strip for measuring, resembling a tape-line.
    • n ribbon One of the stripes painted on arrow-shafts, generally around the shaftment. Also called clan-mark, owner-mark, game-tally, etc.
    • n ribbon A narrow web of silk for hand-stamps, saturated with free color, which is readily transferred by pressure to paper.
    • n ribbon In stained-glass work and the like, a strip or thin bar of lead grooved to hold the edges of the glass. See lead, 7.
    • n ribbon In heraldry, a bearing considered usually as one of the subordinaries. It is a diminutive of the bend, and one eighth of its width.
    • n ribbon In carpentry, a long thin strip of wood, or a series of such strips, uniting several parts. Compare rib-band.
    • n ribbon Nautical, a painted molding on the side of a ship.
    • n ribbon Figuratively, anything which marks the attainment of an object of ambition; also, the object itself.
    • n ribbon A member of the Order of the Garter.
    • n ribbon The badge of a society pledged to total abstinence from the use of intoxicating drinks: it consists of a bit of blue ribbon worn in a buttonhole.
    • n ribbon The ribbon of a knight of the Legion of Honor.
    • ribbon Made of ribbon: as, a ribbon bow; ribbon trimming.
    • ribbon In mineralogy, characterized by parallel bands of different colors: as, ribbon agate.
    • ribbon [capitalized] Pertaining to the Ribbon Society or to Ribbonism: as, a Ribbon lodge.
    • ribbon To border with stripes resembling ribbons; stripe; streak.
    • ribbon To adorn with ribbons.
    • ribbon To form into long narrow strips; cause to take the shape of ribbon.
    • n ribbon The banding in slates due to the preservation of the original bedding, which may be related to the cleavage at any angle.
    • ribbon To stretch into long strips like ribbons: sometimes with out, as soap at one stage of its manufacture.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: In honor of the original thirteen states, the U.S. $1 bill has the following on the back: 13 steps on the pyramid. The motto above the pyramid has 13 letters (annuit coeptis). E pluribus unum, written on the ribbon in the eagle's beak, has 13 letters. 13 stars appear over the eagle's head. 13 stripes are on the shield. 13 war arrows are in the eagle's left talon.
    • n Ribbon rib′on a fillet or strip of silk: a narrow strip: : :
    • adj Ribbon made of ribbon: having bands of different colours
    • v.t Ribbon to adorn with ribbons: to stripe: to streak
    • n Ribbon rib′on (pl.) reins for driving: a shred: a watch-spring: an endless saw
    • n Ribbon rib′on (her.) a bearing considered usually as one of the subordinaries
    • n Ribbon rib′on (naut.) a painted moulding on the side of a ship—also Rib′and, Ribb′and
    • ***


  • Don Marquis
    “Persian pussy from over the sea demure and lazy and smug and fat none of your ribbons and bells for me ours is the zest of the alley cat”
  • Oswald C. Hoffman
    Oswald C. Hoffman
    “Having given us the package, do you think God will deny us the ribbon?”
  • Robert Benchley
    Robert Benchley
    “The biggest obstacle to professional writing is the necessity for changing a typewriter ribbon.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. riban, OF. riban, F. ruban, probably of German origin; cf. D. ringband, collar, necklace, E. ring, circle, and band,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. riban (Fr. ruban), perh. Celt.; cf. Ir. ribin, Gael. ribean. Diez suggests Dut. ring-band, necktie, collar.


In literature:

Anybody got a ribbon?
"Dorothy's House Party" by Evelyn Raymond
The palest possible pink may be combined with these as linings, vests or ribbons.
"Social Life" by Maud C. Cooke
His hair was white, he wore a decoration ribbon, and he had descended from a private brougham.
"A Nest of Spies" by Pierre Souvestre
She will buy Ah Kee a broad blue ribbon.
"Our Young Folks at Home and Abroad" by Various
The apron is to be gathered, or plaited to the band; and the shoulder straps may be of the same material, or of ribbon.
"The Ladies' Work-Table Book" by Anonymous
She's put on her ribbon for Dic.
"A Forest Hearth: A Romance of Indiana in the Thirties" by Charles Major
Hair-ribbons and ribboned things and a crumpled sash bedecked the carpet.
"In a Little Town" by Rupert Hughes
Alas, her vicious brood have turned on her and cast her ribbons in the mire!
"The Strollers" by Frederic S. Isham
The light is reflected from this ribbon exactly as it fell upon the ribbon.
"The Story of a Tinder-box" by Charles Meymott Tidy
He also took out a fine steel ribbon, or measuring tape, neatly wound up on a reel.
"The Galaxy" by Various

In poetry:

And the stripes of ribbon grass
By the curling way-
I shall never dare to pass
To my dying day.
"Paths" by Dorothy Parker
Him all that goodly company
Did as deliverer hail -
They tied a ribbon round his neck,
Another round his tail.
"The Delectable Ballad Of The Waller Lot" by Eugene Field
And still sadly onward I followed
That Highway the Icen,
Which trails its pale ribbon down Wessex
O'er lynchet and lea.
"My Cicely" by Thomas Hardy
Marie Hamilton's to the kirk gane,
Wi ribbons in her hair;
The king thought mair o Marie Hamilton,
Than ony that were there.
"The Queen's Marie" by Andrew Lang
As shews the air when with a rain-bow graced,
So smiles that ribbon 'bout my Julia's waist;
Or like——Nay, 'tis that Zonulet of love,
Wherein all pleasures of the world are wove.
"Upon Julia's Ribbon" by Robert Herrick
There are girls in forty seaports, an' they wait for you —
Wait for Johnnie Chantyman an' all his singin' crew;
But they better deck their tresses with bright ribbons gay,
An' forget those sailors singin' down the sea's cold way.
"Johnnie Chanteyman" by Bill Adams

In news:

On Oct 1, North Bergen Mayor Nicholas Sacco helped lead a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the grand opening of Palisades Child Care Center's new, expanded location at 7701 Marine Road in North Bergen.
The white ribbons, symbolic of the city's grief, are beginning to fray.
Two spots get this week's Blue Ribbon Award for clean dining.
The sanctuary, at 123 Redemption Way, was officially opened for tours during a ribbon-cutting ceremony April 20.
A grand opening and ribbon cutting is planned for September however the new office itself will open August 6th.
DeTray Investment Group has ribbon cutting.
DeTray Investment Group had a ribbon cutting to celebrate its new office at 815 E Second St Suite 100 in Defiance last week.
Texas Tech celebrates new two-story dining hall with ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Texas Tech, United Supermarkets celebrate new two-story dining hall with ribbon-cutting ceremony.
DEA, CHP drop by Glendora's Stanton Elementary for Red Ribbon Week.
Stanton Elementary School students look at tools law enforcement officials use to break into a building as part of the Glendora school s Red Ribbon Week celebrations on Oct 26.
Even on streets bleached by muni lighting, the aurora whisped its satiny ribbons.
Teena Watson (left), with daughter Nakeya Watson-Edwards, 2, cuts the ribbon to open… (CHARLES FOX / Staff Photographer ).
Step Into Wellness will hold a ribbon-cutting and open house for its new location at 5301 E State St, Suite 206, Rockford, Tuesday, Nov 15.
Ribbon-cutting is at 4 pm, and open house runs 4-6 pm.

In science:

The periods of the Strebel differential determine a metric on the ribbon graph.
Periods of Strebel Differentials and Algebraic Curves Defined over the Field of Algebraic Numbers
It has been shown in that Γy is the ribbon graph consisting of the set of critical tra jectories of the Strebel differential q1 .
Periods of Strebel Differentials and Algebraic Curves Defined over the Field of Algebraic Numbers
In a neighborhood of the vertex the ribbons are placed on the surface as on the Figure.
Gibbs and Quantum Discrete Spaces
The notion of factorizability plays an important role in the works [34, 26] where an action of SL(2, Z) on ribbon Hopf algebras is defined and studied.
From Subfactors to Categories and Topology II. The quantum double of tensor categories and subfactors
If H is ribbon the map T : H → H is defined by T (b) = θb.
From Subfactors to Categories and Topology II. The quantum double of tensor categories and subfactors