pen·​dant ˈpen-dənt How to pronounce pendant (audio)
senses 3 & 4 are also
ˈpe-nənt How to pronounce pendant (audio)
sense 5 is also
päⁿ-ˈdäⁿ How to pronounce pendant (audio)
variants or less commonly pendent
: something suspended: such as
: an ornament (as on a necklace) allowed to hang free
A turquoise pendant hung on her necklace.
: an electrical fixture suspended from the ceiling
hung an incandescent light pendant from the ceiling over the reading area
: a hanging ornament of roofs or ceilings much used in the later styles of Gothic architecture
: a length of line usually used as a connector on a boat or ship
especially : a short rope hanging from a spar and having at its free end a block or spliced thimble (see thimble sense 2a)
chiefly British : pennant sense 1a
: companion piece
The portrait of his father is a pendant to the one of his mother.
: something secondary or supplementary
The illustration is an apt pendant to the poem.

Did you know?

Most pendants are purely decorative. But a pendant may also hold a picture or a lock of hair of a lover or a child. And, perhaps because they hang protectively in front of the body and near the heart, pendants have often had symbolic and magical purposes. Thus, a pendant may be a charm or amulet, or its gems or metals may be felt to have health-giving properties. In architecture, a pendant is an ornament that hangs down from a structure, but unlike a necklace pendant it's usually solid and inflexible.

Examples of pendant in a Sentence

Navajo necklaces with pendants finely crafted in genuine sky-blue turquoise. a pendant that once flew on Nelson's flagship
Recent Examples on the Web As well as a series of opening door pendants, the collection features statement rings, drop earrings, stacking archway rings scattered with gems and keyhole pendants designed to encourage the wearer to unlock their hearts’ desires. Kate Matthams, Forbes, 20 Feb. 2024 Kimmel also asked Hardman about the giant diamond necklace around his neck, his signature chain with a huge pendant shaped like a jet. Lisa Gutierrez, Kansas City Star, 14 Feb. 2024 This unique lotus pendant light adds some texture and trend to the space, while still being a bit understated. Taylor Gumm, Rolling Stone, 7 Feb. 2024 The doll also comes with a chain necklace with the seashell pendant that is at the center of the classic movie. Sari Hitchins, Parents, 7 Feb. 2024 We are obsessed with the Kendra Scott Friendship Bracelet, which comes in five different colors and features a corresponding center stone pendant for a monochromatic look. Jessie Quinn, Peoplemag, 4 Feb. 2024 In a bedroom, a drum pendant light can look great, as can a chandelier. Charlotte Observer, 30 Jan. 2024 These personal ornaments were surprisingly diverse: ivory fashioned into owl-like shapes, beads carved to look like human breasts, amber pendants, shells with holes in them and a wide variety of animal teeth. Sarah Wild, Scientific American, 29 Jan. 2024 The dating of the oldest human activity at this site, including these giant sloth bone pendants, to around 27,000 years ago means that modern humans reached central Brazil prior to the last glacial maximum around 20,000 years ago. Ryan McRae, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 Dec. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pendant.' 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 pendaunt, from Anglo-French pendant, from present participle of pendre to hang, from Vulgar Latin *pendere, from Latin pendēre; akin to Latin pendere to weigh, estimate, pay, pondus weight

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of pendant was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near pendant

Cite this Entry

“Pendant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


variants also pendent
: something that hangs down especially as an ornament

More from Merriam-Webster on pendant

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