brid·​al | \ˈbrī-dᵊl \

Definition of bridal 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a marriage festival or ceremony



Definition of bridal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of or relating to a bride or a wedding : nuptial

2 : intended for a newly married couple a bridal suite

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Synonyms for bridal

Synonyms: Noun

espousal, marriage, nuptial(s), wedding

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Did You Know?

A secondary meaning of Old English ealu, the ancestor of Modern English ale, was “feast, banquet,” at which the drinking of ale was a prominent activity. There were a number of these feasts and banquets that survived into the 19th century, but the oldest and best-established was the bride-ale, or wedding feast, attested in Old English as brydealu. In Middle English the ale half of the word had lost its stress and was associated with the noun suffix –al (as in funeral) and the adjective suffix (as in parental). By the 18^th^ century, bridal was perceived primarily as an adjective, as it is today.

Examples of bridal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

While eveningwear, grand gowns, custom bridal, and royal dressing don't immediately come to mind when thinking of Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos, that is surely about to change. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Who Is Peter Pilotto? Meet the Designer Behind Princess Eugenie's Wedding Gown," 12 Oct. 2018 But sussing out the big news in bridal, which wrapped just last week, requires quite a different perspective. Emily Farra, Vogue, "Fall 2019’s Top 7 Bridal Trends, from Major Sleeves to Gowns à la Meghan Markle," 19 Oct. 2018 To say that bridal designers were inspired by the upcoming nuptials of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry would be an understatement. Lindsay Peoples, The Cut, "The 5 Wedding Dress Trends for Brides to Know in 2019," 30 Apr. 2018 Watch the new video, below, for Cardi’s over-the-top bridal looks, which are the perfect antidote to all of the prim pomp and circumstance from the weekend. Rachel Hahn, Vogue, "After the Royal Wedding, Cardi B Has an Unexpected Bridal Moment of Her Own," 21 May 2018 With its many tiers, and its wispy fabric, Jenner's look bordered on bridal, but the risqué, naked element of the dress was in keeping with the model's style. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kendall Jenner Gets Naked for a Second Time at Cannes," 12 May 2018 Even with her uses of bridal white (or lack there of), Wang is happy to take risks–but the brands use of color for bridal is not unique to this season. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Exclusive: Vera Wang Talks Bridal Risk-Taking, Bold Color and Her New Spring 2019 Collection," 13 Apr. 2018 Now, for a whole host of reasons, Findikoglu is launching a new, equally wow-worthy venture: bridal. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Dilara Findikoglu Is Launching the Most Inclusive Fantastical Collection of Wedding Attire," 20 June 2018 So how does her glittering headpiece compare to the pantheon of royal bridal tiaras? Brittany Talarico,, "The Meaning Behind Meghan Markle's Wedding Tiara: How It Pays Tribute to Her New Royal Family," 19 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Earlier today, in Mumbai, the couple was photographed entering Chopra’s mother’s home, clad in festive Indian attire designed by bridal couturier Manish Malhotra. Noor Brara, Vogue, "Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas Begin Their Pre-Wedding Ceremonies—Here’s What Could Be Next," 28 Nov. 2018 That’s bad news for David’s Bridal and other retailers that have profited from traditional bridal tropes. E.j. Dickson, Vox, "The bridal retail chain just filed for bankruptcy. It’s been in trouble for a long time.," 20 Nov. 2018 This would be a major difference from Alfred Angelo, another bridal retailer that abruptly closed its doors and filed for chapter 7 in 2017. Lillian Rizzo, WSJ, "David’s Bridal Reaches Restructuring Deal With Lenders," 15 Nov. 2018 As for her Western looks, Chopra will have her pick of the bridal litter, and top names like Vera Wang, Oscar de la Renta, Dior, Valentino, and more are likely all still in the mix. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Priyanka Chopra Goes Glam for Her Breakfast at Tiffany's Themed Bridal Shower," 29 Oct. 2018 Princess Eugenie's adorable bridal attendants all wore ivy in their hair, as the accompanied her down the aisle. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Princess Eugenie's Bridal Bouquet Included a Sweet Tribute to Her Kensington Palace Home, Ivy Cottage," 12 Oct. 2018 While Meghan Markle wore a conservative, almost austere, wedding gown, Eugenie might choose an edgier dress that makes a real impact on bridal trends. Nadra Nittle, Vox, "There’s another royal wedding coming up: Princess Eugenie’s," 5 Oct. 2018 To the person who left their car curbside at the airport & shut down terminal 4 causing my flight to be cancelled to my best friends bridal shower - hey, its cool. Alexandra Deabler, Fox News, "Bomb scare at Phoenix airport caused by unattended car; driver only getting $52 parking ticket," 18 Sep. 2018 Community residents lease space for bridal showers, birthday and painting parties, or networking events. Valerie Russ,, "Part safe space, part beacon, West Philly's Urban Art Gallery 'bridges the gap between violence and peace'," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bridal.' 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 bridal


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bridal


Middle English bridale, from Old English brȳdealu, from brȳd + ealu ale — more at ale

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Learn More about bridal

Dictionary Entries near bridal





bridal box


bridal party

Statistics for bridal

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for bridal

The first known use of bridal was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for bridal



English Language Learners Definition of bridal

: of or relating to a bride or a wedding


brid·​al | \ˈbrī-dᵊl \

Kids Definition of bridal

: of or relating to a bride or a wedding

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More from Merriam-Webster on bridal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bridal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bridal

Spanish Central: Translation of bridal

Nglish: Translation of bridal for Spanish Speakers

Comments on bridal

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


a nest or breeding place

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