burnish

verb
bur·​nish | \ ˈbər-nish How to pronounce burnish (audio) \
burnished; burnishing; burnishes

Definition of burnish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to make shiny or lustrous especially by rubbing burnish leather burnishing his sword
b : polish sense 3 attempting to burnish her image
2 : to rub (a material) with a tool for compacting or smoothing or for turning an edge pottery with a smooth burnished surface

burnish

noun

Definition of burnish (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from burnish

Verb

burnisher noun
burnishing adjective or noun

Synonyms for burnish

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of burnish in a Sentence

Verb burnished the floor of the ballroom to a soft luster Noun after some much-needed polishing, the silver tea set had a brilliant burnish
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The three collaborators have done their part to burnish tap’s legacy. Washington Post, 21 May 2021 The pressure is now on, not only to give but to give fast, rather than endow a perpetual foundation that exists, at least in some part, to burnish the legacy of its founder after death. Lucy Alexander, Robb Report, 17 Apr. 2021 The prime minister and his allies appear to have hoped that the Games would stir feelings of national pride among voters and burnish his credentials as a leader just as Japan goes to the polls. Fortune, 27 May 2021 Your online presence and postings should serve as a way to burnish your brand and sell yourself. Jack Kelly, Forbes, 26 May 2021 Graphic design platform 99designs by Vistaprint is looking to help these businesses burnish their brands and bolster their bottom lines. Samantha Todd, Forbes, 12 May 2021 Slowly but surely, Reddit has begun exerting more control over content, in lockstep with efforts to burnish its revenue figures and make its business model look more like its dominant social media peers. Nicolás Rivero, Quartz, 17 Apr. 2021 Much of that debate may play out in the early phases of the 2024 presidential race, as Republican contenders attempt to burnish their foreign policy credentials. Lisa Lerer, New York Times, 15 Apr. 2021 Perhaps the imperative to focus on domestic life, keep the clan together, burnish the family image and brush away the ugly spots was the central occupation of the Bush women, no matter what was happening outside the White House gates. Washington Post, 19 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The dark burnish brings deep savory notes, but even a hint of burn will make the whole mole bitter. Los Angeles Times, 10 Jan. 2020 The cream turns into a rich sauce and the cheese gets bubbly-brown; the greens towards the top burnish (kale chips!) but those underneath stay silky-soft. Sarah Jampel, Bon Appétit, 17 Dec. 2019 As each streetlamp passed, the burnish of its reflected light rolled up alongside them on the asphalt, like a dolphin curious about a new boat in her waters, and then veered away. Caleb Crain, Harper's magazine, 22 July 2019 Perhaps the open roasting caused the sugar to caramelize, adding a slightly bitter burnish that mitigated the awful sweetness. Mimi Sheraton, The Seattle Times, 25 Sep. 2018 The reds of radishes and tomatoes, the burnish of crisped bacon and bright greens of beans and hardy lettuces showed through milky dressings that coated each piece. Bonnie S. Benwick, charlotteobserver, 1 May 2018 A renovation, completed in late 2015, with updates this spring and summer to some of its signature restaurants, adds a new burnish to this destination, just as Mexico City itself is becoming a must-go spot, especially for the international jet set. Melena Ryzik, New York Times, 7 Apr. 2017

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

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First Known Use of burnish

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1646, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for burnish

Verb and Noun

Middle English burnischen, from Anglo-French burniss-, stem of burnir, alteration of Old French brunir, literally, to make brown, from brun

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Time Traveler for burnish

Time Traveler

The first known use of burnish was in the 14th century

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Statistics for burnish

Last Updated

12 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Burnish.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/burnish. Accessed 15 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for burnish

burnish

verb

English Language Learners Definition of burnish

formal : to make (something, such as metal or leather) smooth and shiny by rubbing it

burnish

verb
bur·​nish | \ ˈbər-nish How to pronounce burnish (audio) \
burnished; burnishing

Kids Definition of burnish

: to make shiny

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