Hen·​ley ˈhen-lē How to pronounce Henley (audio)
variants or Henley shirt or less commonly henley or henley shirt
: a lightweight pullover shirt with a ribbed collar and a vertical opening at the neck fastened by a line of buttons
The black Henley shirt was strategically unbuttoned to reveal a chest full of bad-boy tattoos and a sizable gold medallion.Liana Satenstein
He's perched on a stool in a coffee shop in Hollywood wearing a Henley, a mildly whimsical hat, and a pervasively radiant sense of health.Zach Baron
But henleys also boast a feminine side. The women's shirts are often trimmed with lace, decorative buttons or ribbon.Marilyn Johnson

Word History


from Henley on Thames, England, site of the Henley Regatta, a rowing event (the shirt resembles shirts traditionally worn by rowers)

First Known Use

1889, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Henley was in 1889

Dictionary Entries Near Henley

Cite this Entry

“Henley.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Henley. Accessed 13 Jun. 2024.

Geographical Definition


geographical name

Hen·​ley ˈhen-lē How to pronounce Henley (audio)
variants or Henley on Thames
town in Oxfordshire, southeast central England, west of London population 31,744

Biographical Definition


biographical name

Hen·​ley ˈhen-lē How to pronounce Henley (audio)
William Ernest 1849–1903 English editor and author
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