cher·​ub | \ˈcher-əb, ˈche-rəb\
plural cherubs or cherubim\ ˈcher-​ə-​ˌbim , ˈker-​ also  ˈcher-​yə-​ \

Definition of cherub 

1 cherubim plural : an order of angels — see celestial hierarchy

2 plural usually cherubs

a : a beautiful usually winged child in painting and sculpture

b : an innocent-looking usually chubby and rosy person This torrent of arcane football lingo spewed from the lips of a red-haired, freckle-faced cherub— Tim Layden

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Other Words from cherub

cherubic \ chə-​ˈrü-​bik also  ˈcher-​ə-​ \ adjective
cherubically \ -​bi-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb
cherublike \ ˈcher-​əb-​ˌlīk \ adjective

Examples of cherub in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

His heart birthmark is melting real hearts everywhere — and is making us wonder if everyone's favorite love cherub isn't real after all. Sarah Schreiber, Good Housekeeping, "Baby's Rare Heart-Shaped Birthmark Has Everyone Falling in Love With Him," 9 Jan. 2017 This bronze cherub was recovered in 1987 from the wreckage of the Titanic. Lillian Rizzo, WSJ, "Titanic Artifacts May Soon Join Apollo, Alta Portfolios," 20 June 2018 Each of these bells features Catholic imagery, including a crucifix, Madonna and child and faces of cherubs. Jennifer Johnson,, "Niles Village Board approves Leaning Tower bell restoration project," 4 June 2018 The portraits of painterly cherubs around her full skirt perfectly embodied the theme of the occasion, Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination. Ashley Hoffman, Time, "Daenerys Targaryen Blazed Through the 2018 Met Gala Like the Dragon Queen She Is," 8 May 2018 And angels are not just little cherubs playing harps on clouds. Fox News, "Amb. Dennis Ross on Kim Jong Un probing, Gaza protests," 16 May 2018 Outside sit lawn statues of praying cherubs and trumpeting elephants, arrayed before a small forest of plants and trees. Jeff Gammage,, "Hire American? Without foreign workers, a Chesco garden business could wither," 20 Apr. 2018 While everyone was ogling at all the symbolism at the Met Gala last night, Kirsten Dunst welcomed her first cherub with fiancé Jesse Plemons. Rebecca Farley,, "Kirsten Dunst & Jesse Plemons Welcome Their First Child," 8 May 2018 Riffing off the gradiose iconography of the religion, his Spring/Summer ’07 collection was an homage to Madonnas, saints, angels, and cherubs. Cady Lang, Time, "15 Times Catholicism Inspired Iconic Fashion Moments," 4 May 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cherub

Latin, from Greek cheroub, from Hebrew kĕrūbh

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Time Traveler for cherub

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

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English Language Learners Definition of cherub

: a type of angel that is usually shown in art as a beautiful young child with small wings and a round face and body

: someone (such as a child) who is thought of as being like a small angel


cher·​ub | \ˈcher-əb \

Kids Definition of cherub

1 : a beautiful child usually with wings in paintings and drawings

2 : a cute chubby child

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More from Merriam-Webster on cherub

Spanish Central: Translation of cherub

Nglish: Translation of cherub for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about cherub

Comments on cherub

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


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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