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

The costumes, by Catherine Zuber, are delectably excessive too: miles of satin and chiffon and lady-of-the-night finery, tailored to squeeze every last ribcage. Leah Greenblatt, EW.com, "Moulin Rouge! becomes an extravagant, head-spinning Broadway musical," 26 July 2019 So there is no attempt to explain why, for instance, the British characters wear Edwardian-era garb (the costumes are by Elisabetta Polito) but the Roman soldiers are attired in Caesarian helmets and outfits. Don Aucoin, BostonGlobe.com, "On the Common, a whimsical ‘Cymbeline’," 25 July 2019 Male costumes are usually within the $150-300USD range. Anquanette Gaspard, Essence, "Tell Dem We Reach! A First-Timer’s Guide to Caribana, Toronto's Caribbean Carnival," 24 July 2019 Sarafina Bush's deliberately tacky costumes are a hoot, and the frequent dance numbers, many of them incorporating martial arts moves (and nunchucks as well!), are a lot of fun. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Broadway Bounty Hunter': Theater Review," 24 July 2019 And Sonya Berlovitz’s costumes are exquisite, dropping us convincingly into three parts of the 20th century. Rob Hubbard, Twin Cities, "Review: Park Square shows off Christie’s mastery of mystery in fun fashion," 20 July 2019 Noah Marin’s costumes, especially the ones worn by Kuroda and Jue as Ellowans, are fine, as is Sinan Refik Zafar’s sound and Mike Palumbo’s lighting. Joanne Engelhardt, The Mercury News, "Theater review: ‘Language Archive’ talks the talk," 18 July 2019 The costumes are currently available for pre-order on Target's website. Sophie Lewis, CBS News, "Target introduces adaptive Halloween costumes for kids with disabilities," 18 July 2019 People dressing up in giant T. rex costumes is not a new phenomenon. Elinor Aspegren, USA TODAY, "Dozens of costumed T. rex race on a horse track in a delightfully bizarre video," 10 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

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 Mackie, an icon in costuming, kept his acceptance speech brief. Chris Jones, chicagotribune.com, "'Hadestown' and 'Ferryman' are the winners of 2019 Tony Awards," 9 June 2019 The costuming only took a half hour to put on, but to get that full face-and-crown situation happening, as well as the hands, took foreeeeever apparently. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Who Is Vladimír Furdík, the Actor Behind 'Game of Thrones' Villain the Night King?," 1 May 2019 Earlier this winter, Plachetka was Mozart’s Figaro at the Met, while Malfi was costumed as a boy for Cherubino. Larry Wolff, The New York Review of Books, "‘Così’ in Coney," 27 Mar. 2018 Bio: Jacob Hexa is a 22-year-old, non-binary, gay, multi-artist specializing in makeup, sculpture, and costuming who is currently pursuing a degree geared toward their passion in costume design. Angela Watercutter And Samantha Cooper, WIRED, "5 Queer People on How They Found Their Chosen Families," 28 June 2019 Even the shows that do costume their casts with designer pieces generally prefer to do so with bold logos or an outfit that screams STYLE! Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Schitt’s Creek Is Giving the Gift of Fashion This Holiday Season—and All 2019 Long," 20 Dec. 2018 The film, with Teresa Stratas and Placido Domingo in the lead roles, found near-unanimous critical acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic — a rarity for Zeffirelli — and received Oscar nominations for costuming, scenography and artistic direction. Colleen Barry, chicagotribune.com, "Famed Italian director Franco Zeffirelli dies at age 96," 15 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

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 Catherine left her stylish imprint on interiors, too, and even costume design. Penelope Rowlands, ELLE Decor, "Designer Alessandra Branca's New Private Client Atelier by the Seine," 15 Mar. 2019 If red, white, and blue feels too costume-y for your style, try an all-denim look instead. Kelsey Stiegman, Seventeen, "7 Fourth of July Outfits You'll Want to Wear All Summer Long," 15 June 2018 The same goes for any costumes that reference immigration issues — other people's real struggles are not costume fodder. Marci Robin, Good Housekeeping, "15 Offensive Halloween Costumes You Should Never Wear," 1 Aug. 2018 Antonio Banderas puts the finishing touches on his portrait of Picasso in the season finale of this costume drama, which changes subjects (and stars) season to season. Gabe Cohn, New York Times, "What’s on TV Tuesday: James Corden in Britain and ‘Hannah Gadsby: Nanette’," 19 June 2018 Jessica Pushor, costume collections manager, displayed a pair of velvet rhinestone pumps (circa 1905) from the archives that were once worn by the second Mrs. Marshall Field, Delia. Candace Jordan, chicagotribune.com, "Chicago History Museum's Costume Council luncheon honors shoe designer Brian Atwood," 13 June 2018 Others involved with the production are Lisa Friedrichs (musical director), Clifford Harrison (lighting and sound design), Mariah Salvadori (assistant student director), Kiley Velasquez (stage manager) and Ryan Connolly (costume assistant). Elizabeth Marie Himchak, Pomerado News, "'Mary Poppins' opens at Rancho Bernardo High next week," 18 Apr. 2018

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

12 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for costume

The first known use of costume was in 1668

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More Definitions for costume

costume

noun

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

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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