— bell-less , adj.
/bel/ , n.
1. a hollow instrument of cast metal, typically cup-shaped with a flaring mouth, suspended from the vertex and rung by the strokes of a clapper, hammer, or the like.
2. the stroke or sound of such an instrument: We rose at the bell.
3. anything in the form of a bell.
4. the large end of a funnel, or the end of a pipe, tube, or any musical wind instrument, when its edge is turned out and enlarged.
5. Archit. the underlying part of a foliated capital.
a. any of the half-hour units of nautical time rung on the bell of a ship.
b. each individual ring of the bell, counted with others to reckon the time: It is now four bells.
c. a signal on the telegraph of a large power vessel, made between the navigating officers and the engineer.
7. Zool. umbrella (def. 2).
8. Bot. the bell-shaped corolla of a flower.
9. Metall. a conical lid that seals the top of a blast furnace and lowers to admit a charge.
10. ring a bell , to evoke a memory, esp. a vague or partial recollection; remind one of something: His name rings a bell but I can't remember him.
11. ring the bell , to provide what is desired; be satisfactory or successful: This new book rings the bell with teenagers.
12. saved by the bell ,
a. (of a boxer) saved from a knockout by the ringing of a gong signaling the end of a round.
b. (of any person) spared from anticipated trouble by some extraneous event.
13. with bells on , Informal. eagerly; ready to enjoy oneself: Just say when, and we'll be there with bells on.
14. to cause to swell or expand like a bell (often fol. by out ): Belling out the tubes will permit a freer passage of air.
15. to put a bell on.
16. to take or have the form of a bell.
17. Bot. to produce bells; be in bell (said of hops when the seed vessels are forming).
18. bell the cat . See cat 1 (def. 15).
[ bef. 1000; ME, OE belle; c. D bel; deriv. of BELL 2 ]
/bel/ , v.i. , v.t.
1. to bellow like a stag in rutting time.
2. to bay, as a hunting dog.
3. the cry of a rutting stag or hunting dog.
[ 1275-1325; ME bellen, OE bellan to roar; c. OHG bellan (G bellen to bark), MD bellen, belen, ON belja; akin to Lith balsas voice, Skt bhas- bark, bhas- speak. See BELLOW, BELCH ]