\ ˈbel How to pronounce belle (audio) \

Definition of belle

: a popular and attractive girl or woman especially : a girl or woman whose charm and beauty make her a favorite the belle of the ball

Examples of belle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But there is risk, too, for the belles of the early Democratic primary ball. Laurie Kellman, The Seattle Times, "Belles of the ball: Dem freshmen courted by 2020 hopefuls," 19 Feb. 2019 Worlds collided, both physically and metaphorically, in 2011 when a Southern belle and a British duchess finally had a meeting of the minds for the sake of charitable giving. Devon Ivie, Glamour, "Reese Witherspoon Says She Fell Under Kate Middleton's 'Spell' When They First Met," 26 Sep. 2018 Then there’s Beauty and The Beast: Rose prints decorate teapots by John Derian X Astier de Villatte and tiered skirts by Brock Collection will keep you the belle of the ball. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "This Fantasy Gift Guide Holds the Key to a Happily Ever After Holiday," 4 Dec. 2018 His Southern-belle girlfriend made pigeonlike noises behind him. Gary Shteyngart, The New Yorker, "The Luck of Kokura," 18 June 2018 Steadman described meeting a blonde southern belle at the Pendennis Club who asked him to draw her picture. Thomas Novelly, The Courier-Journal, "Artist remembers 1970 Kentucky Derby with Hunter S. Thompson," 2 May 2018 Unforgettably, his faded Southern belle describes the loneliness and loss of middle age as one long walk to the graveyard. Andrea Simakis,, "Dobama Theatre's 'Appropriate' is Long Day's Journey Into White (review)," 26 Apr. 2018 La belle boat neck: The boat neck, or bateau neckline, was one of the most notable design elements of Markle’s wedding gown. Tony Bravo, San Francisco Chronicle, "The Markle effect: 6 wedding trends inspired by the royal wedding," 30 May 2018 Riley Papile and her girlfriend Abby Creneti are setting themselves up to be the (taco) belles of their high school ball. Eileen Reslen, Seventeen, "This Teen Couple Took Their Prom Pictures at a Taco Bell and the Internet Is Here For It," 9 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of belle

1622, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for belle

French, from feminine of beau beautiful — more at beau

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about belle

Dictionary Entries near belle

bell crown

bell curve

bell deck


bell ear



Statistics for belle

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for belle

The first known use of belle was in 1622

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for belle



English Language Learners Definition of belle

old-fashioned : a very attractive and popular girl or woman


\ ˈbel How to pronounce belle (audio) \

Kids Definition of belle

: an attractive and popular girl or woman

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on belle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with belle

Spanish Central: Translation of belle

Nglish: Translation of belle for Spanish Speakers

Comments on belle

What made you want to look up belle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


using a distributed computer network

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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