My questions concerns "take a bow" expression. What is the exact meaning of it? I often see it when a football player scores a beautiful goal and people write "TAKE A BOW". Is it some kind of applause?
For the basic verb, to take a bow means todo a bow which means to bow. All 3 mean the same.
But when someone says to another person "take a bow" it usually means "people are applauding you. Respond to them".
Bowing is the polite response to applause in the US. In casual events (certainly a football game) it is often bowing and waving. Unlike many other countries, the person being applauded does not also applaud.