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bell 1

1. A hollow metal musical instrument, usually cup-shaped with a flared opening, that emits a metallic tone when struck.
2. Something resembling such an instrument in shape or sound, as:
a. The round, flared opening of a wind instrument at the opposite end from the mouthpiece.
b. bells A percussion instrument consisting of metal tubes or bars that emit tones when struck.
c. A hollow, usually inverted vessel, such as one used for diving deep below the surface of a body of water.
d. The corolla of a flower: "In a cowslip's bell I lie" (Shakespeare).
e. The body of a jellyfish.
3. Nautical
a. A stroke on a hollow metal instrument to mark the hour.
b. The time indicated by the striking of this instrument, divided into half hours.
v. belled, bell·ing, bells
1. To put a bell on.
2. To cause to flare like a bell.
To assume the form of a bell; flare.
bell the cat
To perform a daring act.

[Middle English belle, from Old English.]

bell 2

The bellowing or baying cry of certain animals, such as a deer in rut or a beagle on the hunt.
intr.v. belled, bell·ing, bells
To utter long, deep, resonant sounds; bellow.

[From Middle English bellen, to bellow, from Old English bellan.]


Rare. concerned with bells or the manufacture of bells.
a tower for peals of bells or a carillon, usually freestanding. Also called campanario.
one who plays a campanile or carillon; a carilloneur.
the science or art of bell ringing. See also change ringing. — campanologist, campanologer, n.campanological, adj.
the art of sounding a ring or set of from 3 to 12 tuned bells according to intricate patterns of sequences.
1. the sound made by ringing bells.
2. a tinkling, bell-like sound. — tintinnabular, adj.
References in classic literature ?
Amy had a bower in hers, rather small and earwiggy, but very pretty to look at, with honeysuckle and morning-glories hanging their colored horns and bells in graceful wreaths all over it, tall white lilies, delicate ferns, and as many brilliant, picturesque plants as would consent to blossom there.
In the town bells ring and occasionally a train passes, looking like a toy thing in the distance.
There was the whistle of a railway train somewhere in the distance, and the midnight bells were ringing.
As he approached, nothing was audible but the rattling of the light silver ornaments that loaded his arms and neck, and the tinkling of the little bells that fringed his deerskin moccasins.
A baker's cart had already rattled through the street, chasing away the latest vestige of night's sanctity with the jingle-jangle of its dissonant bells.
It was a crisp, clear day, the first of its order for some time; the night had brought a touch of frost, and the autumn air, bright and sharp, made the church bells almost gay.
Mate's Voice from the Quarter-Deck Eight bells there, forward
And they seemed to waken the city--all around, far and near, there were bells, ringing wild music; for fully a minute Jurgis lay lost in wonder, before, all at once, the meaning of it broke over him--that this was Christmas Eve!
But there was a sound here which interrupted the stillness only to add to its mournfulness; this was the faint far sound of tolling bells which floated fitfully to us on the passing breeze, and so faintly, so softly, that we hardly knew whether we heard it with our ears or with our spirits.
The solemn and majestic chanting of the monks was not done by instruments, but by men's voices; and it rose and fell, and rose again in that rich confusion of warring sounds, and pulsing bells, and the stately swing of that ever-present enchanting air, and it seemed to me that nothing but the very lowest of low-grade music COULD be so divinely beautiful.
There was a yell at us, and a jingling of bells to stop the engines, a powwow of cussing, and whistling of steam -- and as Jim went overboard on one side and I on the other, she come smashing straight through the raft.
Gimmerton chapel bells were still ringing; and the full, mellow flow of the beck in the valley came soothingly on the ear.