ba·​bush·​ka | \ bə-ˈbüsh-kə How to pronounce babushka (audio) , -ˈbu̇sh- How to pronounce babushka (audio) , ba- \

Definition of babushka

1a : a usually triangularly folded kerchief for the head
b : a head covering (such as a scarf) resembling a babushka
2a : grandmother Until my own babushka's generation very specific clothes were assigned to specific classes, specific hairstyles distinguishing married from unmarried women.— Francine du Plessix Gray
b : an elderly Russian woman … I jostled among babushkas clutching bags of food for a place on the bus …— Gary Lee

Illustration of babushka

Illustration of babushka

babushka 1a

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Examples of babushka in a Sentence

an elderly Russian woman with a babushka
Recent Examples on the Web For those who don’t fish for keeps, or for those whose haul exceeds the limits of their bellies, an old, dumpling-faced Russian woman in a babushka takes up the slack. Jonathan Miles, Field & Stream, "F&S Classics: Fishing the Venice Beach Pier," 8 Dec. 2020 An old lady in a babushka greets him warmly and congratulates him on his great new gig as a bakery delivery man. Kat Rosenfield,, "Killing Eve recap: [SPOILER] came to a fork in the road," 4 May 2020 One mother has decided to adopt multiple personas: a Russian babushka, a cynical Brooklynite and a Scottish woman who loves the outdoors. New York Times, "Modern Love Podcast: In an Altered World, Listeners Share Their Stories About Love and Life," 15 Apr. 2020 Following in the footsteps of rapper A$AP Rocky and model Kendall Jenner, Jaden Smith became the latest style star to sport a babushka. Vogue, "The Best Fashion Instagrams of the Week: Gwyneth Paltrow, Diplo, and More," 28 Sep. 2019 Now, Rocky is giving us a behind-the-scenes look at the process behind his signature babushka. Rachel Hahn, Vogue, "How to Tie a Babushka, According to A$AP Rocky," 12 Dec. 2019 In one image, a babushka boy rocks a dainty scarf to punctuate a clean white Polo shirt; in another, a show-goer wears a floor-sweeping scarlet dress resembling papal robes. Stephen Tayo, Vogue, "The Best Street Style at Lagos Fashion Week," 28 Oct. 2019 Players are plugged into wider, more daring menswear trends as well—just this past week, following in the footsteps of A$AP Rocky, Frank Ocean, and football player Cam Newton, Clarkson wore a charming silk babushka knotted under his chin. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "@LeagueFits Is the Instagram Account Putting Basketball Fashion Into the Spotlight," 31 Oct. 2019 Fishman isn’t the only one who has come to love the food of his babushka. Deena Prichep, Washington Post, "Even one of Trump’s favorite foods has a hidden Russia connection," 30 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'babushka.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of babushka

1938, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for babushka

Russian, grandmother, diminutive of baba old woman

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Time Traveler for babushka

Time Traveler

The first known use of babushka was in 1938

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Cite this Entry

“Babushka.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2021.

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