General English


Information & Library Science

  • noun the last line of a paragraph printed by itself at the top of a page or column

Media Studies

  • noun the first line of a paragraph, stranded at the bottom of a column or page while the rest of the paragraph is at the top of the next one. This is poor layout and to be avoided.


  • noun (an) American. A piece of now almost obsolete London rhyming slang from around World War II, playing on Widow Twankey (a character in the pantomime Aladdin): Yankee.

Origin & History of “widow”

A widow is etymologically a woman who has been ‘separated’, left ‘solitary’. The word goes back ultimately to Indo-European *widhewo, an adjective formed from the base *weidh- ‘separate’ (source also of English divide and Sanskrit vidhu- ‘solitary’). this produced a large number of words for ‘widow’ in the Indo-European languages, including Latin vidua (source of French veuve, Italian vedova, and Spanish viuda), Russian and Czech vdova, and Welsh gweddr. To the Germanic languages it has given German witwe and Dutch weduwe as well as English widow. Widower was coined in the 14th century.