noun (1)
\ ˈlā How to pronounce lei (audio) , ˈlā-ˌē How to pronounce lei (audio) \

Definition of lei

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a wreath or necklace usually of flowers or leaves


noun (2)
\ ˈlā How to pronounce lei (audio) \

Definition of lei (Entry 2 of 2)

plural of leu

the basic monetary unit of Moldova and Romania — see Money Table

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for lei

Synonyms: Noun (1)

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of lei in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Break out the sunscreen and throw on a lei because Louisville is headed to Maui in 2022. Shannon Russell, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville's men's basketball playing in the 2022 Maui Jim Maui Invitational," 1 Apr. 2021 In addition, cultural events and classes like lei making, lauhala weaving, hula, and ukulele playing are presented. Patricia Doherty, Travel + Leisure, "Oahu Travel Guide," 1 Mar. 2021 His family has been here for generations and his grandmother was one of Waikiki’s original lei sellers. Alex Erdekian, Condé Nast Traveler, "Kaimana Beach Hotel: First In," 5 Mar. 2021 In her quest to expand beyond custom orders, which can take up to seven hours per lei, Shearer, along with friend Beth Elliott, reimagined an old gas station into a store last December, called the Haliimaile Filling Station. Jen Murphy, Travel + Leisure, "Experience the Slower Side of Maui on a Road Trip Through the Heart of the Island," 27 Feb. 2021 On YouTube, Kuana Torres Kahele, a musician and hula practitioner, will teach you how to make a haku-style lei. New York Times, "How to Pretend You’re in Hawaii Tonight," 24 Nov. 2020 Meanwhile, her dad wears a lemon-print brightly colored shirt, a lei, a green version of the same skirt over a pair of black shorts and purple flowers stuck into his backwards baseball cap. Jen Juneau, PEOPLE.com, "Hillary Scott and Husband Create Sweet 'Luau' (at Home!) After Daddy-Daughter Dance Is Canceled," 15 Apr. 2020 The lei, for example, could refer to his home in Hawaii with wife Alexa PenaVega and their two children. Heather Finn, Good Housekeeping, "Who Is Astronaut on 'The Masked Singer'? Fans Already Have Him All Figured Out," 13 Mar. 2020 Patricia Merz, the head of the private high school in Newport Coast, California, placed a lei in the appropriate college’s colors around each student’s neck. Daniel Golden Doris Burke, The New Yorker, "The Unseen Student Victims of the “Varsity Blues” College-Admissions Scandal," 25 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of lei

Noun (1)

1843, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for lei

Noun (1)


Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lei

Statistics for lei

Last Updated

9 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Lei.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lei. Accessed 7 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on lei

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lei

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about lei

Comments on lei

What made you want to look up lei? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Star Wars Words Quiz

  • cu jedi training
  • The bounty portion of bounty hunters (such as Boba Fett) comes from a Latin word meaning
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!