festoon

noun
fes·​toon | \ fe-ˈstün \

Definition of festoon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a decorative chain or strip hanging between two points walls decorated with festoons of flowers
2 : a carved, molded, or painted ornament representing a decorative chain Around the mirror were carved festoons of grapevines.

festoon

verb
festooned; festooning; festoons

Definition of festoon (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to hang or form festoons on
2 : to shape into festoons

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Did You Know?

Noun

Festoon can also be a verb that is used as a synonym of "decorate" or "adorn" (as in "the room was festooned with streamers and balloons"). The verb "festoon," which first appeared in the late 1700s, comes from the noun "festoon," which appeared over 100 years earlier. "Festoon" traces back (by way of French and Italian) to Latin festa, the plural of festum, meaning "festival." "Festa" is also an ancestor of the English noun "feast."

Examples of festoon in a Sentence

Verb

We festooned the halls with leaves and white lights. The balcony is festooned in ivy. His office is festooned with newspaper clippings.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Hence the magnificent gables, the plaster scrolls, escutcheons, vases, masks, garlands, festoons, cartouches, balustrades, and whatnot. Steve King, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why We Keep Going Back to Amsterdam," 24 Dec. 2018 Five minutes after beer became legal at midnight, a big truck, gay with festoons, rumbled to the service entrance of the White house, bearing two cases—a brewer’s gift to the president. sandiegouniontribune.com, "April 7 1933: New Beer's Day," 7 Apr. 2018 Inside the Little A'Le'Inn, pictures of UFO sightings, alien masks and military memorabilia decorate, festoon, cover and otherwise dominate the walls and ceiling. Trevor Hughes, USA TODAY, "Hunting for Area 51's aliens along Nevada's Extraterrestrial Highway," 29 Mar. 2018 Rustic figures The cave had collapsed some years earlier, but that didn’t obscure the rustic figures of animals, fish and humans in daubs of black, white and red that festoon the entry wall. Brian J. Cantwell, The Seattle Times, "From Loreto, 3 day-trip adventures in Baja’s high desert," 31 May 2017 Graffiti bearing the team's red dragons logo festoons the outside of the old stand, which is adorned with littered stairwells and poured cement with all the charm of an old prison. Motez Bishara, CNN, "Champions League final 2017: Zinedine Zidane's incredible journey from Cannes to Cardiff," 1 June 2017 Rustic figures The cave had collapsed some years earlier, but that didn’t obscure the rustic figures of animals, fish and humans in daubs of black, white and red that festoon the entry wall. Brian J. Cantwell, The Seattle Times, "From Loreto, 3 day-trip adventures in Baja’s high desert," 31 May 2017 In December, the council approved the design for the street, including a portion of the road ordained with overhead festoon lights. Ryan Gillespie, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Maitland moves forward in reshaping downtown," 27 June 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

After all, virtually all self-driving cars being tested today are already festooned with conventional cameras capable of capturing much higher-resolution images—in color. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "This lidar/camera hybrid could be a powerful addition to driverless cars," 4 Sep. 2018 Every other major company working on self-driving technology has cars festooned with lidar sensors. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Tesla pulled the “full self-driving” option—here’s what customers think," 25 Oct. 2018 Paul Moody shows up with a sun-yellow Ranger pickup truck festooned with American flags. Doug Struck, The Christian Science Monitor, "As Americans celebrate Independence Day, what does it mean to be a patriot?," 2 July 2018 Another Sany facility 800 miles north, in Beijing, is festooned with flags bearing inspirational slogans. Natasha Khan, WSJ, "Inside the Factory of China’s Future," 25 Aug. 2018 The California condor, Disney's Sleeping Beauty, and Death Valley have all served as inspirations; the flowers festooning models' hair for the Spring 2019 show could have come straight from a Rose Bowl float. Laura Regensdorf, Vogue, "Rodarte's Laura and Kate Mulleavy Talk Gender in Fashion, Floral Infatuations, and Their Dream Beauty Project," 14 Nov. 2018 Mythological frescoes, statues and fountains festoon the house, now an intimate hotel. Kimberly Chrisman Campbell, WSJ, "Getting Cozy with Coco: Touring the Private Villas of Fashion Icons," 13 Sep. 2018 During the midst of construction, these walls were festooned with live wires, creating a maze high scalers had to navigate. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "The Hoover Dam Changed America—And It Might Do It Again," 27 July 2018 The logo features the Liberty Bell festooned with a segmented snake. Sam Wood, Philly.com, "A Liberty Bell and a severed snake: 76ers marketing looks to score a big win," 11 Apr. 2018

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

Noun

1630, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1765, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for festoon

Noun and Verb

French feston, from Italian festone, from festa festival, from Latin — more at feast

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Statistics for festoon

Last Updated

17 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for festoon

The first known use of festoon was in 1630

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More Definitions for festoon

festoon

noun

English Language Learners Definition of festoon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a long chain or strip of something (such as flowers or cloth) that is hung as a decoration

festoon

verb

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

: to cover or decorate (something) with many small objects, pieces of paper, etc.

festoon

noun
fes·​toon | \ fe-ˈstün \

Kids Definition of festoon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a chain or strip hanging between two points as decoration

festoon

verb
festooned; festooning

Kids Definition of festoon (Entry 2 of 2)

: to hang or form festoons or other decorations on

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More from Merriam-Webster on festoon

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with festoon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for festoon

Spanish Central: Translation of festoon

Nglish: Translation of festoon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about festoon

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