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noun (1)

cy·​press ˈsī-prəs How to pronounce cypress (audio)
: any of a genus (Cupressus of the family Cupressaceae, the cypress family) of evergreen trees and shrubs with small overlapping leaves resembling scales
: any of several coniferous trees of the cypress family or the bald cypress family
especially : bald cypress sense 1
: the wood of a cypress tree
: branches of cypress used as a symbol of mourning


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noun (2)

: a silk or cotton usually black gauze formerly used for mourning

Examples of cypress in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
On a terrace flanked by cypress trees, there’s a sculpture of a prancing horse, while a vine-laden pergola shades an alfresco dining space. Mark David, Robb Report, 14 Oct. 2023 Start this portion of the Florida National Scenic Trail — the Florida Trail, for short — from Southwest 79th Terrace in Jasper, then hike past cypress trees and limestone bluffs on the nearly eight-mile one-way trip to Holton Creek River Camp. Evie Carrick, Travel + Leisure, 10 Oct. 2023 Baltimore is a brick city but this pair (there were once a row of eight) of oak and yellow pine structures, with cypress shingles, beat the odds of fire and development. Jacques Kelly, Baltimore Sun, 16 Sep. 2023 Outdoors, the grounds are laced with olive, fruit and cypress trees, and host a heated infinity pool flanked by an open-air cabana, as well as two vegetable gardens, a greenhouse, gym and tennis court that doubles as a helipad. Wendy Bowman, Robb Report, 17 Aug. 2023 Walls covered with horizontal reclaimed cypress boards lend a subtle texture and aroma that gypsum drywall just can’t provide. Southern Living Editors, Southern Living, 2 Aug. 2023 Custom cypress wood walls give this space a homey feel without compromising the contemporary renovations. Ashley Hays-Weaver, Dallas News, 21 July 2023 Scientists stumbled upon the gigantic specimen—a Himalayan cypress (Cupressus torulosa)—in May, according to a statement from Peking University. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 30 June 2023 Other options include cedar, cypress and redwood, which are naturally rot resistant, but more expensive. Nevin Martell, Washington Post, 31 May 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cypress.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Noun (1)

Middle English cipres, from Anglo-French ciprès, from Latin cyparissus, from Greek kyparissos

Noun (2)

Middle English ciprus, cipres, from Cyprus, Mediterranean island

First Known Use

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Noun (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cypress was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near cypress

Cite this Entry

“Cypress.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


: any of a genus of evergreen trees and shrubs that are related to the pines and have overlapping scalelike leaves
: the wood of a cypress tree

Geographical Definition


geographical name

Cy·​press ˈsī-prəs How to pronounce Cypress (audio)
city in southwestern California southeast of Los Angeles population 47,802

More from Merriam-Webster on cypress

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