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

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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 Featuring a dropper for a customizable experience, this warm and spicy fragrance stands out from the florid seasonal scents. Jennifer Ford, Forbes, "This Lovely Lineup Of Best Women’s Fragrances Is An Instant Mood Booster," 6 Apr. 2021 And yet the language only becomes more florid, even Shakespearean. Max Bearak, Washington Post, "Kenyan police are using Twitter to become known as crime fighters, not killers," 1 Mar. 2021 The Death of Michael Corleone), his style as a director had become more florid, more emotionally extravagant and expressionistic (his next project would be Bram Stoker’s Dracula). Bilge Ebiri, Vulture, "The Greatest Godfather Ending of Them All," 25 Feb. 2021 While Michaelis’s style is sometimes florid, his uncanny ability to nail down the atmospherics of a particular place and time with consummate grace is engaging. Washington Post, "A modest rebel: The paradoxical personality of Eleanor Roosevelt," 6 Nov. 2020 Where Beanpole is profoundly humanist and disorientingly florid, Closeness—set in Balagov’s hometown of Nalchik in the late 1990s, the period of his childhood—is another sort of tour de force: raw and brutally transgressive. J. Hoberman, The New York Review of Books, "My Quarantine: Cannes, Interrupted," 13 May 2020 Few places better reflect the florid diversity of language — and its fragility — than the forests of Brazil. Washington Post, "‘There are no words’: As coronavirus kills Indigenous elders, endangered languages face extinction," 6 Oct. 2020 Like the florid feathers of a male peacock or the shimmer of a soap bubble, these structures are iridescent, shining with different hues depending on the angle they’re viewed from. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Glitzy Beetles Use Their Sparkle for Camouflage," 29 Jan. 2020 When the project was unveiled, Gang talked about her admiration for such 1920s landmarks as 450 Sutter St., with its florid terra-cotta bays marching to the sky. John King, SFChronicle.com, "Twisty white Mira tower is dazzling on the skyline, but less so on the ground," 12 July 2020

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.

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First Known Use of florid

1651, in the meaning defined at sense 1c

History and Etymology for florid

Latin floridus blooming, flowery, from florēre

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Last Updated

13 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Florid.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/florid. Accessed 16 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for florid



English Language Learners Definition of florid

: very fancy or too fancy
: having a red or reddish color


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

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Comments on florid

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