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an·​tique (ˌ)an-ˈtēk How to pronounce antique (audio)
 in verse often  ˈan-tik
: existing since or belonging to earlier times : ancient
antique trade routes to India
: being in the style or fashion of former times
antique manners and graces
: made in or representative of the work of an earlier period
antique mirrors
also : being an antique
: selling or exhibiting antiques
an antique show


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an·​tique (ˌ)an-ˈtēk How to pronounce antique (audio)
: a relic or object of ancient times
: a work of art, piece of furniture, or decorative object made at an earlier period and according to various customs laws at least 100 years ago
: a manufactured product (such as an automobile) from an earlier period


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an·​tique (ˌ)an-ˈtēk How to pronounce antique (audio)
antiqued; antiquing

transitive verb

: to finish or refinish in antique style : give an appearance of age to
antique a table

intransitive verb

: to shop around for antiques
antiquer noun
Choose the Right Synonym for antique

old, ancient, venerable, antique, antiquated, archaic, obsolete mean having come into existence or use in the more or less distant past.

old may apply to either actual or merely relative length of existence.

old houses
an old sweater of mine

ancient applies to occurrence, existence, or use in or survival from the distant past.

ancient accounts of dragons

venerable stresses the impressiveness and dignity of great age.

the family's venerable patriarch

antique applies to what has come down from a former or ancient time.

collected antique Chippendale furniture

antiquated implies being discredited or outmoded or otherwise inappropriate to the present time.

antiquated teaching methods

archaic implies having the character or characteristics of a much earlier time.

the play used archaic language to convey a sense of period

obsolete may apply to something regarded as no longer acceptable or useful even though it is still in existence.

a computer that makes earlier models obsolete

Examples of antique in a Sentence

Adjective studied shards from antique pots made by the Pueblos of the Southwest loved to collect antique sugar tongs Noun That car is an antique. their house is filled with rare antiques, including a collection of 19th-century African masks
Recent Examples on the Web
Some of the props also displayed include Mollie’s bible and rosary beads, Mollie’s pipe and an antique blue ball mason jar. Jazz Tangcay, Variety, 18 Nov. 2023 The antique look adds a touch of elegance to any room, making this gift both functional and beautiful. Molly Menning, Rolling Stone, 14 Nov. 2023 Distinguished by their ‘Anglo-Asian’ aesthetic, the hotel’s guest rooms pair antique furnishings with modern touches like Music switch controls in grand space featuring walk-in wardrobes and mosaic-tiled bathrooms. Lauren Jade Hill, Forbes, 13 Nov. 2023 The couple subsequently undertook an extensive restoration in conjunction with Tate Builders, which included adding dormers, and replicating antique windows and doors. Wendy Bowman, Robb Report, 9 Nov. 2023 It was built out of antique Brussels lace — along with silk, taffeta and tulle — and embellished with pearls. Erin Hill, Peoplemag, 8 Nov. 2023 An antique shop in San Juan’s Plaza de Americas shopping mall still sells costumes and memorabilia from his estate. Dan Allen, NBC News, 30 Oct. 2023 There are two color options for the base of the candles: pewter and antique bronze. Jenna Sims, Southern Living, 24 Oct. 2023 In fact, even the compound’s chicken coop was made from an antique cabinet. Abby Montanez, Robb Report, 19 Oct. 2023
Alpine Garden and Gifts Find plants and pots, antiques, yard art and handmade gifts from artisan vendors at Alpine Garden and Gifts. Maura Fox, San Diego Union-Tribune, 19 Nov. 2023 Find modern antiques, like these gorgeous glass goblets that are only $20 for a set of four. Lauren Taylor, Southern Living, 17 Nov. 2023 Collectors imposed their own systems and hierarchies on the art, antiques, plants and animals within their cabinets in an attempt to create an encyclopedic framework of the world’s knowledge. Anne Wallentine, Smithsonian Magazine, 16 Nov. 2023 There’s a cozy salon for afternoon tea and aperitifs, as well as bedrooms decorated with floral wallpaper, sumptuous fabrics, and antiques. Lindsay Cohn, Travel + Leisure, 14 Nov. 2023 Interest in the White House interiors and furnishings ebbed and flowed during subsequent administrations, with attempts to document china patterns and antiques and to form committees to consider donations. Jura Koncius, Washington Post, 27 Oct. 2023 His canal-side home has been transformed into a museum showcasing his vast collection of art and antiques. Meagan Drillinger, Travel + Leisure, 8 Sep. 2023 Drawing inspiration from the warm and cozy corners of our grandparents’ homes, this style combines the elegance of antique finds with stunning contemporary pieces. Samantha Booth, Rolling Stone, 24 Oct. 2023 Born the daughter of a well-to-do Shanghai antiques merchant in 1933, Ms. Wu received an elite education that bore no resemblance to Teacher Bai’s bare-bones cave classes. Ann Scott Tyson, The Christian Science Monitor, 18 Oct. 2023
Plan your Lakeside Chautauqua day of antiquing for Saturday, Aug. 24, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Lakeside Antique Show celebrates its 59th year of offering a scenic lake view, along with fabulous dealers and outstanding heirlooms. Brenda Yenke,, 22 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile, the designers incorporated another element of American history with the wheat-motif dining chairs, rare models Rush and Klaus found while antiquing in the southeast. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, 7 Aug. 2019 Matte, polished, antiqued and brushed give home decorators many options to provide interest and depth. Washington Post, 6 Aug. 2019 For instance, instead of a basic mirror and hook, add a fanciful detail like these antiqued mirrored hooks for jewelry and your room key. Ap McClatchy, The Mercury News, 29 July 2019 There are now hundreds of affinity cruises appealing to any number of interests, from antiquing to stargazing to photography to mystery novels. Peter Jon Lindberg, Condé Nast Traveler, 18 July 2019 The new look is pale and cool, with floor tiles in faded green pattern, antiqued green chairs and pretty layered white hanging lamp fixtures. Polly Campbell,, 20 June 2018 On trend right now are satin or brushed nickels and warmer antiqued brass. Diane Cowen, Houston Chronicle, 6 Apr. 2018 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'antique.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Adjective, Noun, and Verb

Middle French, from Latin antiquus, from ante before — more at ante-

First Known Use


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1530, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1786, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of antique was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near antique

Cite this Entry

“Antique.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
an·​tique an-ˈtēk How to pronounce antique (audio)
: an object of an earlier period
especially : a work of art, piece of furniture, or decorative object made at an earlier period


2 of 2 adjective
: belonging to antiquity
: belonging to earlier periods
antique furniture
: belonging to or resembling a former style or fashion
silver of an antique design

More from Merriam-Webster on antique

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