ornament

noun
or·​na·​ment | \ ˈȯr-nə-mənt How to pronounce ornament (audio) \
plural ornaments

Definition of ornament

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 archaic : a useful accessory
2a : something that lends grace, beauty, or festivity holiday ornaments
b : a manner or quality that adorns
3 : one whose virtues or graces add luster to a place or society
4 : the act of adorning or being adorned
5 : an embellishing note not belonging to the essential harmony or melody

called also embellishment, fioritura

ornament

verb
or·​na·​ment | \ ˈȯr-nə-ˌment How to pronounce ornament (audio) \
ornamented; ornamenting; ornaments

Definition of ornament (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to provide with ornament : embellish

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for ornament

Verb

adorn, decorate, ornament, embellish, beautify, deck, garnish mean to enhance the appearance of something by adding something unessential. adorn implies an enhancing by something beautiful in itself. a diamond necklace adorned her neck decorate suggests relieving plainness or monotony by adding beauty of color or design. decorate a birthday cake ornament and embellish imply the adding of something extraneous, ornament stressing the heightening or setting off of the original a white house ornamented with green shutters , embellish often stressing the adding of superfluous or adventitious ornament. embellish a page with floral borders beautify adds to embellish a suggestion of counterbalancing plainness or ugliness. will beautify the grounds with flower beds deck implies the addition of something that contributes to gaiety, splendor, or showiness. a house all decked out for Christmas garnish suggests decorating with a small final touch and is used especially in referring to the serving of food. an entrée garnished with parsley

Examples of ornament in a Sentence

Noun She wore a hair ornament. The columns are there purely as ornament—they have no structural function. Verb flower patterns used to ornament boxes delicate crystal figurines ornament the mantel over the fireplace
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun To us, this rather small and ordinary narrative detail is unquestionably an ornament of the story, one that ennobles it, proves its gravity, widens its embrace of our common humanity. Cameron Hilditch, National Review, 4 Apr. 2021 Write your service members’ name and or sentiment on an ornament to be placed on a Holiday Tree located on a wall at the Berea Recreation Center, 451 Front St. Rich Heileman, cleveland, 12 Dec. 2020 Local dartboard ornament Irving, who was held to 16 in Boston’s Game 3 win, erupted for 23 first-half points. BostonGlobe.com, 31 May 2021 The Sprit of Ecstasy hood ornament now levitates out of the hood itself for a cleaner, more elegant look. Howard Walker, Robb Report, 9 Mar. 2021 To create the snowman ornament shown here, cut three different-size wood disks. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, 26 Dec. 2020 The new Hunter helmet Eververse ornament takes the hood off of all cloaks. Paul Tassi, Forbes, 11 May 2021 Made between 1550 and 1650, the ornament is meant to be worn at the waist. Los Angeles Times, 3 May 2021 The subtle ornament of its bark, foliage, acorns and restrained fall coloration all combine to make an oak greater than the sum of its parts. Washington Post, 14 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The second-floor master suite incorporates a bedroom with new oak floors, a bow window and a walk-in closet with mirrored doors ornamented with etched glass. Julie Lasky, New York Times, 13 May 2020 In the 1920s, Cleveland’s wealthy lined Shaker Boulevard in Shaker Heights and Fairmount Boulevard in Cleveland Heights with richly ornamented, neo-Tudor or neoclassical mansions that openly flaunt the wealth of their owners. Steven Litt, cleveland, 3 May 2020 This is the basic three-color version of the bread plate, but there was also a six-color variant and a version ornamented with opaque maiolica glazes. Catherine Bindman, The New York Review of Books, 17 Apr. 2020 Hardy even adds an internal rhyme, thrush/thus, to ornament the terminal ones. Richard Brookhiser, National Review, 19 Dec. 2019 But at the very least, locals can create their own holiday wonderland by decorating their homes, hanging twinkle lights, and ornamenting a Christmas tree. Taylor Seely, azcentral, 2 Dec. 2019 Get with the program at Java & Jam in downtown Fort Lauderdale where the halls will be decked and drinks properly ornamented for Miracle On Las Olas: Christmas Cocktail Bar, open at 5 p.m. nightly through Jan. 2. Ben Crandell, sun-sentinel.com, 26 Nov. 2019 There was one room known as ‘the House of Gold’ for being entirely ornamented from top to bottom in that metal. Joshua Hammer, Smithsonian, 21 Nov. 2019 The theater, renovated in 1897 by William H. English’s son, William E. English, featured two balconies that allowed for clear viewing of the spectacular arched proscenium that was ornamented in gold-and-white fresco work. Dawn Mitchell, Indianapolis Star, 14 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1650, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ornament

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French urnement, ornement, from Latin ornamentum, from ornare

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About ornament

Time Traveler for ornament

Time Traveler

The first known use of ornament was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for ornament

Last Updated

19 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ornament.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ornament. Accessed 24 Jun. 2021.

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

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ornament

ornament

noun

English Language Learners Definition of ornament

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small, fancy object that is put on something else to make it more attractive
formal : a way to make something look more attractive and less plain

ornament

verb

English Language Learners Definition of ornament (Entry 2 of 2)

formal : to make (something) more attractive by adding small objects to it

ornament

noun
or·​na·​ment | \ ˈȯr-nə-mənt How to pronounce ornament (audio) \

Kids Definition of ornament

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that adds beauty : decoration a Christmas tree ornament

ornament

verb
or·​na·​ment | \ ˈȯr-nə-ˌment How to pronounce ornament (audio) \
ornamented; ornamenting

Kids Definition of ornament (Entry 2 of 2)

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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