Definition of towel noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//ˈtaʊəl//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈtaʊəl//
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  • a piece of cloth or paper used for drying things, especially your body Help yourself to a clean towel. a hand/bath towel (= a small/large towel) a beach towel (= a large towel used for lying on in the sun) a kitchen towel (= a piece of paper from a roll that you use to clean up liquid, etc. in the kitchen) see also paper towel, sanitary towel, tea towel
  • Word OriginMiddle English: from Old French toaille, of Germanic origin. The current sense of the verb dates from the mid 19th cent.Extra examples He had a towel draped across his shoulders. Several towels hung over the side of the bath. a heated towel rail/​rack a paper towel dispenserIdioms (informal) to admit that you have been defeated and stop trying We're not going to throw in the towel just because we lost one game.
    See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: towel