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Related to drab: Drap, olive drab, DARB


1. a light olive-brown colour
2. a fabric of a dull grey or brown colour



a heavy, thick woolen fabric of a complicated inter-woven machine-spun yarn. Drab consists usually of two layers and as a result has high heat-insulating properties. The outer face of the fabric is often made from a higher quality of wool than the inner. Depending on the structure and the design of the weave, drab may be made with or without nap, of one or many colors, and with a plain face or a design on the lining. Drab is used for winter and spring-autumn coats.

References in classic literature ?
You might know them, if they were masked, by their long-tailed blue coats and bright buttons, and their drab trousers, which they wear like men well used to working dresses, who are easy in no others.
The chests were taken out with all convenient despatch, and taken in to be unlocked by Mrs Jarley, who, attended by George and another man in velveteen shorts and a drab hat ornamented with turnpike tickets, were waiting to dispose their contents (consisting of red festoons and other ornamental devices in upholstery work) to the best advantage in the decoration of the room.
He exchanges new lamps for old, the spangles of illusion for the drabs of reality, and in the end cheats all who traffic with him.
On the left of his great leader sat the poetic Snodgrass, and near him again the sporting Winkle; the former poetically enveloped in a mysterious blue cloak with a canine-skin collar, and the latter communicating additional lustre to a new green shooting-coat, plaid neckerchief, and closely-fitted drabs.
That drab and humourless presence pervades his BBC1 Imagine series, a ratings and critical disaster which this week even made a dull show about wonderful John Mortimer.
If they deviate from the series of portraits and celestial bodies for which he is most known, they do recall his earlier photographs of drab industrial and domestic architecture in Germany.
Neither function very well, and both contributed to the creation of Bering Strait, a Grammy-nominated country band comprising seven talented young people from the drab, quarantined-under-the-Soviets science center of Obninsk, Russia.
One was a drab record of what a worker might see during his daily routine: apartment, hallway, subway platform, elevator buttons, surveillance camera, people on the street, and finally (the day's treat) a movie theater.
It started with a letter from Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, to Yasser Arafat, Palestinian Authority chairman (always photographed in olive drab sans even fur collar).
But when the same building reappears in Yellow Landscape II, 1996, it is expressively painted in drab browns and greens, as if the image had undergone an angry, visceral attack at the hands of an Abstract Expressionist.
CANYON COUNTRY - People often bemoan strip malls as drab and too plentiful, but the mishmash of businesses squeezed together on one local corner likely helped save a man's life last week.
Like Family and Lost Cows, it was painted on cardboard in a semiprimitive style and in a less naturalistic palette than the one Lowe employed in her drab renditions of idealized Americana.