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Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English coule, from Old English cūle, from earlier cugele (hood, cowl), from Ecclesiastical Latin cuculla (monk's cowl), from Latin cucullus (hood), of uncertain origin.


cowl (plural cowls)

  1. A monk's hood or hooded robe
    • Alexander Pope
      What differ more, you cry, than crown and cowl?
  2. A mask that covers the majority of the head.
  3. A thin protective covering over all or part of an engine; also cowling
  4. A usually hood-shaped covering used to increase the draft of a chimney and prevent backflow.
  5. (nautical) A ship's ventilator with a bell-shaped top which can be swivelled to catch the wind and force it below
  6. (nautical) A vertical projection of a ship's funnel that directs the smoke away from the bridge

See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle English cuuel, from Old French cuvel (vat), diminutive of cuve, from Latin cūpa (tub, cask, tun, vat).


cowl (plural cowls)

  1. (obsolete, Britain) A vessel carried on a pole, a soe