- a piece of cloth, usually square, worn over the head or around the neck
- a handkerchief
Origin of kerchiefMiddle English kerchef, coverchef ; from Old French covrechef ; from covrir, to cover + chef, the head: see chief
nounpl. ker·chiefs also ker·chieves
- A square scarf, often worn as a head covering.
- A handkerchief.
Origin of kerchiefMiddle English coverchef, curchef, from Anglo-Norman courchief (variant of Old French couvrechef) and from Old French couvrechef : covrir, to cover; see cover + chef, head; see chief.
- (old-fashioned) A piece of cloth used to cover the head.
Middle English, from Old French couvrechief, from couvrir (“to cover”) + chief (“head”).