decorate

verb
dec·o·rate | \ ˈde-kə-ˌrāt \
decorated; decorating

Definition of decorate 

transitive verb

1 : to add honor to decorated commerce with the splendid virtues of honor and loyalty —Geoffrey Household

2 : to furnish with something ornamental decorate a room with artwork decorating the Christmas tree

3 : to award a mark of honor to a soldier decorated for valor highly decorated war veterans

intransitive verb

: to furnish something with ornamentation decorating for the party

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Choose the Right Synonym for decorate

adorn, decorate, ornament, embellish, beautify, deck, garnish mean to enhance the appearance of something by adding something unessential. adorn implies an enhancing by something beautiful in itself. a diamond necklace adorned her neck decorate suggests relieving plainness or monotony by adding beauty of color or design. decorate a birthday cake ornament and embellish imply the adding of something extraneous, ornament stressing the heightening or setting off of the original a white house ornamented with green shutters , embellish often stressing the adding of superfluous or adventitious ornament. embellish a page with floral borders beautify adds to embellish a suggestion of counterbalancing plainness or ugliness. will beautify the grounds with flower beds deck implies the addition of something that contributes to gaiety, splendor, or showiness. a house all decked out for Christmas garnish suggests decorating with a small final touch and is used especially in referring to the serving of food. an entrée garnished with parsley

Examples of decorate in a Sentence

I always enjoy decorating the Christmas tree. I decorated my apartment in dark colors.

Recent Examples on the Web

Her church is decorated with blue and orange banners, boldly represented in adjacent watercolors. George Fishman, miamiherald, "Monarchs ‘Brown and Native’ butterfly exhibit a response to contemporary events," 13 July 2018 But in the black-and-white photos that Jennings found, the walls around the murals are decorated with elaborate paint and fronted by faux marble columns, compliments of Hopffgarten’s brush. Maria L. La Ganga, idahostatesman, "What’s behind ’60s-era paneling at El Korah Shrine? A ballroom’s worth of ’20s art.," 12 July 2018 The curtains were decorated with a pattern of blue lines that exactly resembled tire tracks. Ian Frazier, Outside Online, "Ian Frazier on the Freedom of His First #Vanlife Summer," 11 July 2018 Long tables were decorated with floral arrangements by Eothen that complemented both the architecture of the estate and the arid Palm Springs landscape. Tamara Abraham, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Bridal Shop Owner Wore Five Different Dresses for her Palm Springs Wedding," 10 July 2018 It was decorated with roughly 900 flowers and leaves using cream and white icing. Maura Hohman, PEOPLE.com, "Here's Why Kate and William Served Their 7-Year-Old Wedding Cake at Prince Louis' Christening," 9 July 2018 This year, France is the most decorated, having won the 1998 title at home and finishing second eight years later. Steven Goff, chicagotribune.com, "'Hard-working, compact, united and well-organized': The World Cup's surprising final four," 8 July 2018 Each suite is decorated to honor various moments from the town's backstory. Megan Stein, Country Living, "Chip and Joanna Gaines Just Listed a Hotel in Texas and We Want to Buy It Immediately," 8 July 2018 The pillows are decorated with icons, cultural signifiers, flora and fauna. Matthew J. Palm, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Take home art by Jiha Moon at Mennello special events," 3 July 2018

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

1530, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for decorate

Latin decoratus, past participle of decorare, from decor-, decus ornament, honor — more at decent

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Statistics for decorate

Last Updated

18 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for decorate

The first known use of decorate was in 1530

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More Definitions for decorate

decorate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of decorate

: to make (something) more attractive usually by putting something on it

: to give a medal or award to (someone, such as a soldier)

decorate

verb
dec·o·rate | \ ˈde-kə-ˌrāt \
decorated; decorating

Kids Definition of decorate

1 : to make more attractive by adding beautiful or festive things We decorated the room with flowers.

2 : to award a badge of honor to The soldier was decorated for bravery.

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