bow [-s] n

OE 'bow, bend'; note that the /bau/ and /bo:/ forms come from the same etymology.

  1. /bo:/; Violin rod; flexible appliance for making music sound from strings; [fig.] brain; mind; reason; sanity; will; control; volition; inclination; organ of intelligence; capacity for language.
  2. /bau/; Polite gesture; salutation by bending; courteous body language; token of respect by lowering the head; motion of reverence by inclining the upper torso downward.
  3. /bau/ and /bo:/; Descent; lowering; downward motion; [fig.] condescension; inclination; [sound play and sense play] arch; prism; rainbow; refraction of light; (see Genesis 9:13).
  4. /bo:/; Weapon; archer's instrument; curved wooden frame for shooting arrows; (see Genesis 27:3); [fig.] charm; spell; trance; enamoring; infatuation; enchantment.

bow [-ed, -ing] v

see bow, n.; /bau/ pronunciation.

  1. Move; bend; [fig.] live; revive.
  2. Bend; descend; tilt; curve down the horizon [fig.] set; go down.
  3. Curtsy; nod; acknowledge courteously; [fig.] sway; move in the wind.
  4. Introduce; welcome; invite; receive.
  5. Pray; worship; give praise; do homage; (see Psalms 95:6).
  6. Wave; undulate; ebb; go out.
  7. Acknowledge applause; respond to an audience's ovation; do reverence, as in ballet.