flor·​id | \ ˈflȯr-əd How to pronounce florid (audio) , ˈflär- \

Definition of florid

1a : very flowery in style : ornate florid prose florid declamations also : having a florid style a florid writer
b : elaborately decorated a florid interior
c obsolete : covered with flowers
2a : tinged with red : ruddy a florid complexion
b : marked by emotional or sexual fervor a florid secret life a florid sensibility
3 : fully developed : manifesting a complete and typical clinical syndrome the florid stage of a disease
4 archaic : healthy

Other Words from florid

floridity \ flə-​ˈri-​də-​tē How to pronounce florid (audio) , flȯ-​ \ noun
floridly \ ˈflȯr-​əd-​lē How to pronounce florid (audio) , ˈflär-​ \ adverb
floridness \ ˈflȯr-​əd-​nəs How to pronounce florid (audio) , ˈflär-​ \ noun

Did you know?

When it first entered English "florid" was used with the literal meaning "covered with flowers." That use, though now obsolete, hints at the word's history. English speakers borrowed "florid" from the Latin adjective floridus ("blooming" or "flowery"), itself from the verb "florēre" ("to bloom"). "Florēre," which in turn comes from a Latin root meaning "flower," is also an ancestor of the words "flourish" and "florescence" ("a state or period of flourishing"). These days, "florid" can refer to an overblown style in speech, writing, or decoration. As such, its synonyms include "ornate," "rococo," and "overwrought."

Examples of florid in a Sentence

a florid, gilded mirror that took up most of the wall gave a florid speech in honor of the queen's visit
Recent Examples on the Web Witness the self-consciously florid dialogue, sometimes poetically heightened to the point of torture. Justin Changfilm Critic, Los Angeles Times, 20 Apr. 2022 His florid documentary eavesdrops on fragmented dialogues: between father and son, among friends and neighbors, between land and river and, of course, between the past and the present. Lovia Gyarkye, The Hollywood Reporter, 7 Mar. 2022 While the blithely unworried are hindered by too little imagination, the florid fantasies of QAnon show that some Americans are beset by too much of the same. Jennifer Szalai, New York Times, 3 Jan. 2022 And there’s no sign of a florid inscription that was supposedly carved into the box’s side. Washington Post, 22 Dec. 2021 Long or short, soft or loud, florid or dry, funny or serious — each prison column lands with a thud. Kyle Whitmire, al, 27 Sep. 2021 Messiaen provided florid descriptions of the movements, and in this one the reed warbler is the great orator of his local lily pond. Los Angeles Times, 27 Sep. 2021 Around that time, Texas Right to Life, a decades-old Christian pro-life organization that was one of the principal forces behind the passage of S.B. 8, sent out a florid fund-raising appeal. Jia Tolentino, The New Yorker, 5 Sep. 2021 The bottles are now adorned with a clean, minimalist label, which the Baccini family says is a deliberate distancing from the often florid, fussy designs for prosecco wines. Rebecca Ann Hughes, Forbes, 30 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'florid.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of florid

1651, in the meaning defined at sense 1c

History and Etymology for florid

borrowed from Latin flōridus "abounding in flowers, brightly colored, in the bloom of youth, highly colored (of rhetoric)," adjective derivative, with the suffix -idus, corresponding to flōrēre "to bloom" — more at florescence

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Last Updated

25 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Florid.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/florid. Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for florid


flor·​id | \ ˈflȯr-əd How to pronounce florid (audio) \

Kids Definition of florid

1 : very fancy or flowery in style florid writing
2 : having a reddish color a florid face


flor·​id | \ ˈflȯr-əd, ˈflär- How to pronounce florid (audio) \

Medical Definition of florid

: fully developed : manifesting a complete and typical clinical syndrome florid hyperplasia

Other Words from florid

floridly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on florid

Nglish: Translation of florid for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of florid for Arabic Speakers


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