Don’t be such a snood.

No, no—that’s not it.

Guess again.

Not a clue?

What if I said …


Now I’ve really stumped you!

A snood (which rhymes with food) is:

  1. the distinctive headband formerly worn by young unmarried women in Scotland and northern England.
  2. a netlike hat or part of a hat or fabric that holds or covers the back of a woman’s hair

It can also be used as a verb that means “to bind or confine the hair with a snood.”

Ahhh …


Painting by Adolph Menzel (1815–1905) via Wikimedia Commons

The traditional Scottish snood was a narrow circlet or ribbon fastened around the head as a sign of chastity. Victorian era hairnets worn for decoration were also called snoods, and during World War II, snoods became popular in factories, where they were worn to keep hair from being caught in machinery.


Photo courtesy of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library & Museum via Wikimedia Commons

But there is one last definition that is sure to tickle your gizzard. Actually two more definitions, one of them a family tradition of ours. For some reason—to this day, we have no idea why—but the nickname my daughter and son gave each other was SNOODS. And why they gave each other the same nickname, we have no idea. Even into their teen years, it was Snoods this and Snoods that. Snoodles. Snooders. One summer, I encouraged the two of them to drive across the country to Cape Cod to visit their grandparents. (What fun for a 22-year-old and her brother, age 18, right?!) In the back window of their Subaru was a sign they made announcing to the world “Snoods’s Cross-Country Road Trip.”

A snood may also refer to the pendulous skin over the …

beak of a turkey. (If I had only known, I could have used this against them time and time again!)

Such as this:


Photo courtesy of the USDA via Wikimedia Commons

Or, say, this:


Photo by Xuaxo via Wikimedia Commons

Resemblance noted.


Photo by Chris Wenzel via Wikimedia Commons


Leave a comment 7 Comments

  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Mary Jane, today is my FIRST DAY OF RETIREMENT!!! Yep, this Farmgirl is now officially full time ” on the farm”! Yesterday was busy and a bit sad, but after a good night’s sleep, I think I am going to like this “farm life”( in the city that is!).

    Yes, Snoods. I recently learned about them and I think they are really cute and practical for a fun way to put your hair up. The photo shown here of the red snood with cute beads is extra cool! I was not aware of the turkey connection for the word , but it does make sense when you look at them. By the way, those turkeys are quite handsome with all of their fine facial colors! Are they part of your farm?

    • MaryJane says:

      Congrats my friend!!!!! Embrace your second life. Many great wonders will unfold. Soooooooo excited for you.

  2. Kimberly Owens says:

    Good morning! I just love the new words I can share with my students. They love to hear my farm stories. I share your magazine with them all the time. Thank you for what you do ;D

  3. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Thanks Mary Jane! I am excited about the possibilities of new things to see and do! And 3 weeks from today I will be in Idaho! I am so excited!!!!!!!!! Coeur d’Alene or Bust! Wagons Ho, Delta!

  4. Terry Steinmetz says:

    I love snoods. I’ve worn them off & on when I had long hair. And they are so easy to make! And that Tom turkey looks just like the ones in my yard every day! And congrats! to Winnie!! 🙂 Make the most of each day girlfriend!

  5. Eileen says:

    I guess I will have to say the picture in more than one way made me stop not the hair but the work my mother was one of the first Rosie the ribber in Portland Oregon at Zidell as a welder formen but she had extra long hair at first then cut some of it to work but it was great to see the picture. We still have my Mother Dock card to work in the ship yards thanks again

  6. I was aware of the turkey snood but not the hairnet! And heaven knows, I can use one of those! Thank you for educational/literary this feature… I love it!

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