gar·​ish | \ ˈger-ish How to pronounce garish (audio) \

Definition of garish

1 : clothed in vivid colors a garish clown
2a : excessively or disturbingly vivid garish colors garish imagery
b : offensively or distressingly bright : glaring
3 : tastelessly showy : flashy garish neon signs

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Other Words from garish

garishly adverb
garishness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for garish

gaudy, tawdry, garish, flashy, meretricious mean vulgarly or cheaply showy. gaudy implies a tasteless use of overly bright, often clashing colors or excessive ornamentation. circus performers in gaudy costumes tawdry applies to what is at once gaudy and cheap and sleazy. tawdry saloons garish describes what is distressingly or offensively bright. garish neon signs flashy implies an effect of brilliance quickly and easily seen to be shallow or vulgar. a flashy nightclub act meretricious stresses falsity and may describe a tawdry show that beckons with a false allure or promise. a meretricious wasteland of casinos and bars

Examples of garish in a Sentence

the wedding guest's thick makeup was garish and unnecessary
Recent Examples on the Web The calipers get the same treatment, with an aluminum finish instead of garish red or yellow. Car and Driver, "How We'd Spec It: 2020 Ferrari Roma," 25 Apr. 2020 There’s humorous gal-pal business about applying make-up, wearing garish wigs and buying dresses, as well as hardball negotiating with promoters and managers. Matt Damsker, USA TODAY, "Review: Loretta Lynn remembers her friendship with Patsy Cline in heartfelt new memoir," 7 Apr. 2020 That garish Tampa Bay uniform suggests some guy working behind a pizza counter. Bruce Jenkins,, "NFL QB shuffle: Tom Brady serving up TDs, or pizzas? Mariota a starter in Vegas?," 3 Apr. 2020 His days were organized by head counts, mealtimes, and garish fluorescent lights. Anna Clark, The New Republic, "He Was Wrongly Imprisoned for 25 Years. It Wasn’t DNA Evidence That Got Him Out.," 22 Apr. 2020 Yet, there is something charming about even its most garish elements. Tyler Coates, Wired, "A Meme Account About a Mall Is Now a Lifeline," 8 Apr. 2020 The effect of the 15.0-inch center screen and 12-inch digital cluster is impressive—it was intended for the stillborn second-generation Phaeton as well—but the operating logic takes some getting used to, and the graphics could be a bit less garish. Jens Meiners, Car and Driver, "2020 VW Touareg V8 TDI: In Europe, the Diesel Continues to Evolve," 6 Apr. 2020 The light blue design, matched with garish orange socks, was complemented by a strange graphic print that left plenty of supporters wondering what exactly Nike were trying to accomplish., "Chelsea Kit Leak: Images Emerge Online of Incredible New 3rd Strip for 2019/20 Season," 14 June 2019 The city then was an electric blend of the sacred and profane: a cocktail of religious piety, garish energy, and opiate nostalgia; repellant and addictive at the same time. Francis X. Maier, National Review, "Pope Francis’s Respectful Critics Deserve Better Than Scorn," 20 Mar. 2020

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

1545, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for garish

origin unknown

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Time Traveler for garish

Time Traveler

The first known use of garish was in 1545

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Statistics for garish

Last Updated

16 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Garish.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for garish


How to pronounce garish (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of garish

: too bright or colorful


gar·​ish | \ ˈger-ish How to pronounce garish (audio) \

Kids Definition of garish

: too bright or showy : gaudy She was dressed in garish colors.

Other Words from garish

garishly adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on garish

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for garish

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with garish

Spanish Central: Translation of garish

Nglish: Translation of garish for Spanish Speakers

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