\ ˈbä(l)m How to pronounce balm (audio) \

Definition of balm

1 : a balsamic (see balsamic sense 1) resin especially : one from small tropical evergreen trees (genus Commiphora of the family Burseraceae)
2 : an aromatic preparation (such as a healing ointment) applied a balm to the wound
3 botany : any of several aromatic plants of the mint family especially : lemon balm
4 : a spicy aromatic odor … the white lilies in the garden, the herb bed near the bees—everything sent out fragrance and balm into the soft air …— Agnes S. Turnbull
5 : a soothing restorative agency Friendship is certainly the finest balm for the pangs of disappointed love.— Jane Austen

Examples of balm in a Sentence

Art can be a balm to the soul. She shows that laughter is a balm for difficult times.
Recent Examples on the Web My favorite lip balm is the Laneige Lip Sleep Mask. Talia Abbas, Glamour, 3 Aug. 2022 And its now-$11 glowy balm is a great way to see what all of the hype is about without spending a ton. Jessica Leigh Mattern,, 13 July 2022 Finally, the Peptide Lip Treatment goes beyond your regular lip balm by protecting and plumping your pucker while minimizing fine lines and boosting volume. Celia Shatzman, Forbes, 15 June 2022 Safeguard your lips throughout your beach day with your favorite lip balm or oil. Kiana Murden, Vogue, 31 May 2022 Instead, two unobtrusive zippered hand pockets offer enough storage for small essentials like lip balm while lying flat against the thigh for minimal bulk. Amy Jurries, Outside Online, 1 Nov. 2020 But in a city where summers can hang heavy with strife, the CSO’s concerts in Millennium Park, the city’s symbolic heart — with other visits in 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2015 — feel like a special balm. Hannah Edgar, Chicago Tribune, 28 June 2022 In the cooling shade of the Gobi tent, the music felt like a balm for the noise and hubbub of the weekend to come. Suzy Exposito, Los Angeles Times, 15 Apr. 2022 Over 300 Nordstrom customers are raving about this nourishing cleansing balm that's available in a jumbo size at the sale. Tiffany Dodson, Harper's BAZAAR, 6 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of balm

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for balm

Middle English basme, baume, from Anglo-French, from Latin balsamum balsam

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The first known use of balm was in the 13th century

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Last Updated

8 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Balm.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for balm


\ ˈbäm How to pronounce balm (audio) , ˈbälm \

Kids Definition of balm

: a greasy substance used for healing or protecting the skin lip balm


\ ˈbä(l)m, New England also ˈbȧm \

Medical Definition of balm

1 : a balsamic resin especially : one from small tropical evergreen trees (genus Commiphora of the family Burseraceae)
2 : an aromatic preparation (as a healing ointment)
3 : a soothing restorative agency

More from Merriam-Webster on balm

Nglish: Translation of balm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of balm for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about balm


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