gar·​ni·​ture ˈgär-ni-chər How to pronounce garniture (audio)
: a set of decorative objects (such as vases, urns, or clocks)

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In Middle French, garniture meant "accessory." It is an alteration of the Old French noun garneture, which is derived from the verb garnir, which meant "to equip, trim, or decorate." In fact, an Anglo-French stem of garnir, garniss-, is the source of the English verb garnish, which in its senses of "to decorate" and "to embellish" shares a similar relationship to garniture that the verb furnish shares with furniture. Furnish comes from the Anglo-French furniss-, a stem of the verb furnir or fournir, which also gave rise to the Middle French fourniture, the source of the English furniture.

Examples of garniture in a Sentence

she prefers a spare style of interior decoration and doesn't go in for a lot of garnitures
Recent Examples on the Web Instead, the piece is most commonly used as either a mantel garniture (there were two matching pieces that often came with it, small compotes for the garniture) or as a table centerpiece (often with two diminutive candelabra). Helaine Fendelman and Joe Rosson, Star Tribune, 1 Dec. 2020 Who knew the colder months could offer such lush (not to mention tasty) fodder for garniture. Rachel Silva, ELLE Decor, 16 Dec. 2022 Your clock garniture set is by Tiffany & Company of New York and dates to the last quarter of the 19th century. oregonlive, 2 Dec. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'garniture.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English garnetture "border, trimming" (Early Modern English garniture "appurtenances"), borrowed from Anglo-French gerneiture, garniture "ornament, mount for a jewel" & Middle French garniture "accessory," going back to Old French garneture "accessory for a saddle," from garnir "to equip, trim, decorate" + -eture, -iture, going back to Latin -ītūra, from -īt-, participle ending of 4th conjugation verbs + -ūra -ure — more at garnish entry 1

First Known Use

1558, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of garniture was in 1558


Dictionary Entries Near garniture

Cite this Entry

“Garniture.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2024.

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