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 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, "Church Unearthed in Ethiopia Rewrites the History of Christianity in Africa," 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, "A Rare Tiara Designed for a Romanov Coronation Goes on Display," 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, "In Iraq Museum, There Are Things ‘That Are Nowhere Else in the World’," 9 June 2019 The sound box of the instrument was incrusted with carnelian, lapis lazuli, and mother-of-pearl. National Geographic, "The royal tombs of Ur revealed Mesopotamia's golden splendor," 22 May 2019 Gaze in wonder at that particular shade of carnelian. Andrew Sean Greer, Vogue, "More Is More: Novelist Andrew Sean Greer on the Virtues of Questionable Taste," 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, "Behind the Legendary Good Fortune of Van Cleef's Alhambra," 1 Oct. 2018 By adding lead, antimony, copper, manganese and other natural elements, pieces could be made to replicate lapis lazuli, carnelian, alabaster and turquoise. Susan Dunne,, "Ancient Glass Exhibit At Yale University Art Gallery," 7 Aug. 2017

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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Cite this Entry

“Carnelian.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2020.

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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

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