car·​ne·​lian | \ kär-ˈnēl-yən How to pronounce carnelian (audio) \

Definition of carnelian

: a hard red chalcedony used in jewelry

Examples of carnelian in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In addition to the jewelry and seal, the researchers discovered a wide range of gemstones, including a red carnelian from India, a blue lapis lazuli from Afghanistan and amber from the Baltic Sea. David Kindy, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 Dec. 2021 The element chains are vivid with colorful links made of stones like lapis and carnelian and all of her medallions have meaning and are buildable. Daisy Shaw-ellis, Vogue, 7 June 2021 Within and near the Aksumite ruins, the archaeologists also found a diverse array of goods, from a delicate gold and carnelian ring with the image of a bull’s head to nearly 50 cattle figurines—clearly evidence of pre-Christian beliefs. Andrew Lawler, Smithsonian, 11 Dec. 2019 There are 88 gems in total in what is officially known as the Devonshire Parure, including carnelian, amethyst, garnets, emeralds, sapphires, and diamonds. Stellene Volandes, Town & Country, 8 July 2019 The same was true of the Golden Lyre of Ur, a 4,500-year-old musical instrument inlaid with gold, silver and carnelian. Alissa J. Rubin, New York Times, 9 June 2019 The sound box of the instrument was incrusted with carnelian, lapis lazuli, and mother-of-pearl. National Geographic, 22 May 2019 Gaze in wonder at that particular shade of carnelian. Andrew Sean Greer, Vogue, 16 Apr. 2019 The earliest Alhambras were done in creased gold and black onyx, but ivory and wood soon followed (neither is now available), as did the signature stone styles like malachite, lapis, and carnelian. Stellene Volandes, Town & Country, 1 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'carnelian.' 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 carnelian

1695, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for carnelian

alteration of cornelian, from Middle English corneline, from Anglo-French, perhaps from Old French cornele cornel cherry

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The first known use of carnelian was in 1695

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Dictionary Entries Near carnelian

Carnegie unit


carnelian red

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Last Updated

18 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Carnelian.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for carnelian


car·​ne·​lian | \ kär-ˈnēl-yən How to pronounce carnelian (audio) \

Kids Definition of carnelian

: a hard reddish quartz used as a gem

More from Merriam-Webster on carnelian Encyclopedia article about carnelian


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