costume

noun
cos·​tume | \ ˈkä-ˌstüm How to pronounce costume (audio) , -ˌstyüm also -stəm or ˈkäs-ˌchüm How to pronounce costume (audio) \

Definition of costume

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : the prevailing fashion in coiffure, jewelry, and apparel of a period, country, or class
2 : an outfit worn to create the appearance characteristic of a particular period, person, place, or thing Halloween costumes
3 : a person's ensemble of outer garments especially : a woman's ensemble of dress with coat or jacket

costume

verb
cos·​tume | \ kä-ˈstüm How to pronounce costume (audio) , -ˈstyüm also käs-ˈchüm; or ˈkä-ˌst(y)üm or ˈkäs-ˌchüm How to pronounce costume (audio) or -stəm How to pronounce costume (audio) \
costumed; costuming

Definition of costume (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to provide with a costume
2 : to design costumes for costume a play

costume

adjective
cos·​tume | \ ˈkä-ˌstüm How to pronounce costume (audio) , -ˌstyüm also -stəm or ˈkäs-ˌchüm\

Definition of costume (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : characterized by the use of costumes a costume ball a costume drama
2 : suitable for or enhancing the effect of a particular costume a costume handbag

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Other Words from costume

Noun

costumey adjective

Examples of costume in a Sentence

Noun children in their Halloween costumes a formal 18th-century Japanese costume Verb the days when people, costumed in their Sunday best, would parade along the grand avenue on Easter Adjective You're invited to a costume party!
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Company members will perform a variety of dances in Indian costumes. Houston Chronicle, "SL Fort Bend Calendar 091819," 16 Sep. 2019 There are no costume changes aside from an occasional hat or pair of glasses. Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News, "Review: ‘Murder for Two’ gets good and silly in Walnut Creek," 11 Sep. 2019 And so four nights a week, through six shows, each with five costume changes, Darcelle goes all the way: full makeup, ornate often heavy gowns and big jewelry. oregonlive, "Darcelle is finally having her Portland moment," 10 Sep. 2019 Several people who have worked in the costume department of the LA Opera, where Domingo has served in various capacities since the 1980s, said his backstage behavior was common knowledge and that management had been aware of it for years. Washington Post, "Singer says opera’s Domingo harassed her, grabbed her breast," 7 Sep. 2019 Several people who have worked in the costume department of the LA Opera, where Domingo has served in various capacities since the 1980s, said his backstage behavior was common knowledge and that management had been aware of it for years. Jocelyn Gecker And Jocelyn Noveck, USA TODAY, "11 more women accuse opera singer Placido Domingo of sexual harassment, inappropriate behavior," 5 Sep. 2019 Allen hits every dance move, every costume change, every moment, flawlessly in the video, taking us on an amazing visual journey of Beyoncé’s work. Essence, "Every Member Of The Hive Needs To See This Epic Visual Tribute To Beyoncé," 5 Sep. 2019 The work, a subjective history of American culture and dysfunction since 1776, highlights various musical styles and artistic voices, ranging from murder ballads to disco, from Walt Whitman to David Bowie: 24 costume changes and 246 songs in all. Frank Rizzo, courant.com, "A few of Taylor Mac’s favorite moments from his fabulous epic ‘A 24-Decade History of Popular Music’," 24 Aug. 2019 In the eight years since Snapchat was born, it’s gone through more than a few costume changes. Arielle Pardes, WIRED, "Snap Bets Its Future on a Stylish New Pair of Spectacles," 13 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Pearce rocks the house with her powerful high note and silky singing, and her costuming boosts the illusion of androgyny. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: ‘Victor/Victoria’ gets a stylish staging at Moonlight, but musical’s story is stretched a little thin," 12 Sep. 2019 The decadent caper, which is based on Jessica Pressler’s 2015 story for The Cut, uses its costuming in large part to signal its characters’ shifting relationships to the wealth that unites them. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "How Hustlers Captured the Excesses of Pre-Recession Fashion," 17 Sep. 2019 As The Preacher, longtime company member Lloyd Knight, costumed in his handsome frock coat and wide-brimmed hat (Graham often designed the costumes herself), is suitably fervent, yet with a subtle sense of humanity. Janine Parker, BostonGlobe.com, "Two works by Martha Graham make the company’s EVE Project at Jacob’s Pillow transcendant," 16 Aug. 2019 Both gents are simply costumed by Tracy Dorman in nice suits, with Shorey in a flashier vest and bowtie befitting the eccentricity and poshness of his various characters. Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News, "Review: ‘Murder for Two’ gets good and silly in Walnut Creek," 11 Sep. 2019 In 1997, when dozens of people claimed to see UFOs zip across the Phoenix sky, Symington called a press conference and stood next to a staffer costumed as a wide-eyed Martian. Alden Woods, azcentral, "More cake, less scandal (and no UFOs): Ex-Gov. Fife Symington is still looking for his legacy," 7 July 2019 Hasbro isn’t the only company producing high-end Boba Fett costuming gear. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "I wish Hasbro’s new Boba Fett helmet was available when I was a kid," 20 July 2019 The film, with Teresa Stratas and Placido Domingo in the lead roles, found near-unanimous critical acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic and received Oscar nominations for costuming, scenography and artistic direction. Washington Post, "“Romeo and Juliet” director Franco Zeffirelli dies at 96," 15 June 2019 Laurence Connor’s direction and Bob Avian’s musical staging incorporate dazzling, outsized ensemble scenes both in Saigon and its more somber, postwar incarnation of Ho Chi Minh City, with Andreane Neofitou’s costumes an eye-catching highlight. James Hebert, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: A pair of powerful performances help redeem sprawling, uneasy spectacle of ‘Miss Saigon’," 11 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective For the 1963 period, Bryant drew on her experience as costume designer of Mad Men in creating a midcentury style with A-line dresses for doting housewife Beth Ann. Lindsay Weinberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "Why Dressing for 'Why Women Kill' Was a "Costume Designer's Dream"," 15 Aug. 2019 The arrival of Halloween draws ever closer and the Internet has continued to treat us to numerous costume ideas. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Makeup Artist Created a Glamorous Halloween Skeleton Look," 2 Oct. 2018 Highlights include Pirate and Sunken Treasure Rescue, costume party for kids 12 and younger (accompanied by parents) at Pirate Village and pancake breakfast served by the Oceanside Firefighters Association. Linda Mcintosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Senior center recognizes residents older than 90," 16 Sep. 2019 Most of these ideas also work for a best friend, group, or couples costume scenario too. Laurren Welch, Country Living, "10 Best Movie Costume Ideas for a Star-Studded Halloween," 9 Sep. 2019 Scenic and costume design comes from Soutra Gilmour, lighting design by Jon Clark, and sound design and music by Ben and Max Ringham. Dave Quinn, PEOPLE.com, "Tom Hiddleston Tears Up in the Moody First Look at Broadway's Betrayal," 9 Aug. 2019 Olaf’s palate sort of got darker and darker and his costumes became less costume-y right to the end, and that was on purpose. Naomi Hofferber, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Series of Unfortunate Events' Costumer on Creating "Crazy" Latex Octopus Dress, Dragonfly Wings," 14 Aug. 2019 Gabriela Tylesova’s gaudy big top scenic and costume design is impressive, particularly a horseless carriage, carousel horses and some spinning illuminated glass pyramids. Pam Kragen, sandiegouniontribune.com, "'Love Never Dies' looks great, but less filling," 29 Mar. 2018 In my opinion, a person can never be too prepared for the holiday — there’s candy to buy, costume ideas to brainstorm, spooktacular porch decor to plan, and delightfully campy movies to watch. Elissa Sanci, Woman's Day, "Everything You Need to Know About Freeform's '31 Nights of Halloween'," 19 June 2019

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

Noun

1668, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1802, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1800, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for costume

Noun

French, from Italian, custom, dress, from Latin consuetudin-, consuetudo custom — more at custom

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Statistics for costume

Last Updated

4 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for costume

The first known use of costume was in 1668

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More Definitions for costume

costume

noun
How to pronounce costume (audio) How to pronounce costume (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of costume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the clothes that are worn by someone (such as an actor) who is trying to look like a different person or thing
: the clothes worn by a group of people especially during a particular time in the past

costume

adjective
How to pronounce costume (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of costume (Entry 2 of 2)

: involving people wearing costumes

costume

noun
cos·​tume | \ ˈkäs-ˌtüm How to pronounce costume (audio) , -ˌtyüm\

Kids Definition of costume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : special or fancy dress (as for wear on the stage or at a masquerade)
2 : style of clothing, ornaments, and hair used during a certain period, in a certain region, or by a certain class or group ancient Roman costume peasant costume

costume

verb
costumed; costuming

Kids Definition of costume (Entry 2 of 2)

: to provide with a special or fancy outfit

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