1 of 2


band·​box ˈban(d)-ˌbäks How to pronounce bandbox (audio)
: a usually cylindrical box of cardboard or thin wood for holding light articles of attire
: a structure (such as a baseball park) having relatively small interior dimensions


2 of 2


: exquisitely neat, clean, or ordered as if just taken from a bandbox
a bandbox perfection of appearance
bandbox adverb

Did you know?

In the 17th century, the word band was sometimes used for ruffs, the large round collars of pleated muslin or linen worn by men and women of the time period, and the bandbox was invented for holding such bands. The flimsy cardboard structure of the box inspired people to start using its name for any flimsy object, especially a small and insubstantial one. But people also contemplated the neat, sharp appearance of ruffs just taken from a bandbox and began using the word in a complimentary way in phrases such as "she looked as if she came out of a bandbox." Today, "bandbox" can also be used as an adjective meaning "exquisitely neat, clean, or ordered," as in "bandbox military officers."

Examples of bandbox in a Sentence

Adjective a small bandbox bed-and-breakfast decorated with taste and charm
Recent Examples on the Web
The Havocs are closer to a full 50 percent in a bandbox with a lower ceiling that contains, even amplifies, noise. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 Dec. 2023 When the group had a night off in Boston a few years ago, Josh Kantor, the organist at Fenway, who has toured with the band, took them behind the scenes of the Red Sox’ ancient bandbox. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, 18 Sep. 2023 The little bandbox of a stadium was teeming with fans screaming their lungs out for him. Matthew Futterman, New York Times, 8 Sep. 2023 Since Citizens Bank Park is a bandbox, adding the Seagers to a lineup led by Bryce Harper, Rhys Hoskins, and JT Realmuto could change the balance of power within the division – and might push the Phils into postseason play for the first time in more than a decade. Dan Schlossberg, Forbes, 1 Nov. 2021 The combination of lights and music over at the lyric little bandbox of a ballpark gives the 111-year-old joint the feel of a Vegas casino when someone’s rung up a slot machine for a cool million. Kevin Paul Dupont,, 8 Apr. 2023 Thanks in part to Schwarber’s .192 batting average, Philadelphia ranks 10th in the majors with 230 runs scored and only ninth (tied) with 58 home runs – hardly good production for a team that plays half its games in Citizens Bank Park, a notorious bandbox that visiting pitchers detest. Dan Schlossberg, Forbes, 3 June 2022 Ron was artistic from a young age, drawing houses, barns and windmills — and in one instance Ebbets Field, the home of the Brooklyn Dodgers, showing a baseball leaving that beloved little bandbox. Richard Sandomir, New York Times, 9 Feb. 2023 More than a half-century into their tussles, on and off the ice, the Bruins and Penguins meet again on Monday afternoon for the NHL’s Winter Classic, this time in that lyric little bandbox of a hockey rink that is Fenway Park. Andrew Mahoney,, 2 Jan. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bandbox.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use


1631, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1708, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bandbox was in 1631


Dictionary Entries Near bandbox

Cite this Entry

“Bandbox.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a usually round box of paperboard or thin wood often used for storing a hat
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!