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or tum·bril  (tŭm′brəl)
1. A two-wheeled cart, especially a farmer's cart that can be tilted to dump a load.
2. A crude cart used to carry condemned prisoners to their place of execution, as during the French Revolution.

[Middle English tumberell, from Old French tomberel, from tomber, to fall, perhaps of Germanic origin and akin to English tumble.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


A two-wheeled cart used to take condemned prisoners to the guillotine.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.tumbril - a farm dumpcart for carrying dungtumbril - a farm dumpcart for carrying dung; carts of this type were used to carry prisoners to the guillotine during the French Revolution
dumpcart - a cart that can be tilted to empty contents without handling
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
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References in classic literature ?
It is likely enough that in the rough outhouses of some tillers of the heavy lands adjacent to Paris, there were sheltered from the weather that very day, rude carts, bespattered with rustic mire, snuffed about by pigs, and roosted in by poultry, which the Farmer, Death, had already set apart to be his tumbrils of the Revolution.
"My friend, I don't care a pinch of snuff for the whole Royal Artillery establishment--officers, men, tumbrils, waggons, horses, guns, and ammunition."
She knew the hour at which the tumbril with those condemned to die passed the windows; and at the first signal would close them and draw the curtain.
The ship in which I sailed, was the first ever known to be driven within sight of that coast, and the king had given strict orders, that if at any time another appeared, it should be taken ashore, and with all its crew and passengers brought in a tumbril to Lorbrulgrud.
We are nowhere on the road with tumbrils and hi tech guillotines and mongrel humans in puppy cages paying for their sins.
With Mrs May having been dispatched to the Tory tumbrils, it is unfashionable to reiterate that she had a point, even if it was shouted down.
After drifting through rooms replete with images of rumpled bed linen, one could almost hear the approach of retributory tumbrils.
"Surprised spectacles" is an ostensibly comic trope, but the potential socio-cultural significances that converge on it are almost as dark as those of the "reluctant drops of oils": the cart that is put before the horse will morph into the tumbrils of the Revolution.
France's revolutionary society itself becomes corrupted by its excessive insistence on death: "So used are the regular inhabitants of the houses to the spectacle, that in many windows there are no more people, and in some the occupation of the hands is not so much as suspended, while the eyes survey the faces in the tumbrils" (385).
I feel like Marie Antoinette listening to the sound of tumbrils clattering across the cobbles.
An American landscape with "fewer tumbrils" than those of the Spanish landscape alludes to another Goya work: Carts to the cemetery.
We might all be in the Conciergerie, waiting to hear the tumbrils. (143)