ce·​ru·​le·​an | \ sə-ˈrü-lē-ən How to pronounce cerulean (audio) \

Definition of cerulean

: resembling the blue of the sky

Keep scrolling for more

Did You Know?

Cerulean comes from the Latin word caeruleus, which means "dark blue" and is most likely from "caelum," the Latin word for "sky." An artist rendering a sky of blue in oils or watercolors might choose a tube of cerulean blue pigment. Birdwatchers in the eastern U.S. might look skyward and see a cerulean warbler (Dendroica cerulea). "Cerulean" is not the only color name that's closely associated with the sky. "Azure" (which ultimately comes from a Persian word for lapis lazuli, a rich blue stone) describes the color of a cloudless sky and can even be a noun meaning "the unclouded sky."

Examples of cerulean in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Kempinski opens next month, facing the cerulean waters of Douglas Bay and backed by the pines and flora of the island’s Cabrit’s National Park, filled with waterfalls, canyons, and natural hot springs. Erin Florio, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Hottest New Hotel Openings of Fall 2019," 1 Oct. 2019 With the help of three dressers, Ariel Nicholson, the lone Tomo Koizumi model this season, tried on a range of dresses in a range of cerulean blue, highlighter yellow, and peachy pinks. Teen Vogue, "The Best Runway Looks From New York Fashion Week Spring Summer 2020," 7 Sep. 2019 The result is food with flavors as vibrant and deep as the cerulean waters that surround the islands. Khushbu Shah, Washington Post, "The islands of the Indian Ocean aren’t known for their food. A new cookbook aims to change that.," 26 Aug. 2019 Models sashayed barefoot atop a wood-slat runway set on Lake Tahoe’s Rubicon Beach as the cerulean waters of this lake lapped at the sandy shoreline. Catherine Bigelow, SFChronicle.com, "League to Save Lake Tahoe Fashion Show is true blue at 50," 14 Aug. 2019 Elsewhere, Laura Harrier appeared as a modern day Cinderella, making an entrance with a set of baby blue pastel lids to match her cerulean Louis Vuitton gown. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "The Best Beauty Looks From the 2019 Oscars," 25 Feb. 2019 Ron Wendt Designs imbued the room with a springtime flair, ornamenting cerulean tables with pink peonies and candlelight. Danielle Naer, Vogue, "It Was All Glitz and Glamour at Saks and Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Spring 2019 Ball," 22 May 2019 The visual design of the show is exceptional, from Andrés’s cerulean hair and asymmetrical ruffled blouses to the creepily pastel dental office where the unsmiling Úrsula works. Emily Nussbaum, The New Yorker, "Off-Kilter Humor on “Los Espookys” and “Alternatino”," 1 July 2019 At Brock Collection, makeup artist Gucci Westman accented sharp, inky lines along the upper and lower lash lines with smudges of charcoal pigment, while Maryam Nassir Zadeh enhanced thin, razor-sharp flicks by adding a backdrop of cerulean shadow. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "7 Beauty Trends That Ruled the New York Runways This Weekend," 11 Feb. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of cerulean

1662, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cerulean

Latin caeruleus dark blue

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about cerulean

Time Traveler for cerulean

Time Traveler

The first known use of cerulean was in 1662

See more words from the same year

Listen to Our Podcast about cerulean

Statistics for cerulean

Last Updated

7 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Cerulean.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cerulean. Accessed 29 January 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on cerulean

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cerulean

Nglish: Translation of cerulean for Spanish Speakers

Comments on cerulean

What made you want to look up cerulean? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to assert without proof or before proving

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

January 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • image1642096650
  • Which is a synonym of bonhomie?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!