lo·​tus ˈlō-təs How to pronounce lotus (audio)
plural lotuses also lotus
or less commonly lotos : a fruit eaten by the lotus-eaters and considered to cause indolence and dreamy contentment
also : a tree (such as Zizyphus lotus of the buckthorn family) reputed to bear this fruit
: any of various water lilies including several represented in ancient Egyptian and Hindu art and religious symbolism
[New Latin, from Latin]
: any of a genus (Lotus) of widely distributed upright herbs or subshrubs of the legume family

Illustration of lotus

Illustration of lotus
  • lotus 2

Examples of lotus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Even 10th-grade standardized tests were adorned with this year’s G-20 logo, a lotus — the country’s national flower and the symbol of Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Karishma Mehrotra, Washington Post, 8 Sep. 2023 They’re handmade by female Egyptian artisans and have clasps in the shape of lotus flowers or scarabs—my favorite detail. Gisela Williams, Travel + Leisure, 12 Aug. 2023 Because of these attributions, the lotus is often seen alongside divine figures in some cultures. Katie Robinson, Town & Country, 14 June 2023 First and foremost, the lotus has a life cycle unlike any other plant. Katie Robinson, Town & Country, 14 June 2023 Few flowers are also religious symbols, but the sacred lotus qualifies. Jessica Dukes, House Beautiful, 5 June 2023 This Fresh night cream is also rich in antioxidants, such as super lotus, which hydrates and protects the skin and leaves it more radiant. Jessie Quinn, Peoplemag, 12 May 2023 It was composed for a ballet about a legendary ruler who finds a lotus that could grant him eternal life. Christian Hertzog, San Diego Union-Tribune, 29 May 2023 The new Imperiale depicts the lotus flower with overlapping petals within a polished rose gold lacework. Justin Fenner, Robb Report, 27 Mar. 2023 See More

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

Word History


Latin & Greek; Latin lotus, from Greek lōtos

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of lotus was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near lotus

Cite this Entry

“Lotus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lotus. Accessed 27 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


lo·​tus ˈlōt-əs How to pronounce lotus (audio)
: any of various water lilies including several represented in ancient Egyptian and Hindu art

More from Merriam-Webster on lotus

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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