al·​a·​bas·​ter ˈa-lə-ˌba-stər How to pronounce alabaster (audio)
: a compact fine-textured usually white and translucent gypsum often carved into vases and ornaments
: a hard calcite or aragonite that is translucent and sometimes banded
alabaster adjective
or alabastrine

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Other striking elements include Andrea Salvetti’s Tronchi cabinet, with its wood-grain texture, and the Alain Ellouz chandelier in the dining room, comprising 19 alabaster spheres of various sizes. ELLE Decor, 19 Oct. 2022 With her alabaster skin, rosy cheeks, and some black eyeliner (by makeup artist Gucci Westman), the actor’s wide smile said it all. Hannah Coates, Vogue, 13 Oct. 2022 The front of an amorphous alabaster coat flapped unzipped at the top and bottom. Thomas Adamson, ajc, 4 Oct. 2022 There are touches of luxury living throughout the home, such as a closet specifically to store silver and alabaster sconces throughout. Brianna Griff, Chron, 18 Sep. 2022 His new house, likewise, comprises a series of immersive boxes: a circular, double-height screening room, a bar paneled in Oregon Douglas fir, a bathroom wrapped in faux alabaster. Robert Haskell, WSJ, 9 Sep. 2022 The primary suite is also located on the first floor and encompasses a large bedroom, a walk-in closet and a luxurious bathroom with marble tile with Mother of Pearl inlay and alabaster and brass wall sconces. cleveland, 15 July 2022 The museum also acquired a pair of early 15th-century carvings in alabaster representing a pair of apostles identified as Saint Paul (the older) and Saint John the Evangelist (the younger). Steven Litt, cleveland, 27 June 2022 Look for fixtures made with translucent stone, such as alabaster, which allows light to pass through and creates an organic glow. Jessica Bennett, Better Homes & Gardens, 15 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alabaster.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English alabastre, from Anglo-French albastre, from Latin alabaster vase of alabaster, from Greek alabastros

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of alabaster was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near alabaster




Cite this Entry

“Alabaster.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition



al·​a·​bas·​ter ˈal-ə-ˌbas-tər How to pronounce alabaster (audio)
: a smooth usually white and nearly transparent gypsum used for carving (as vases)
: a hard calcite that is nearly transparent and sometimes has stripes

Geographical Definition


geographical name

Al·​a·​bas·​ter ˈa-lə-ˌba-stər How to pronounce Alabaster (audio)
city in central Alabama south of Birmingham population 30,352

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