per·​fume | \ ˈpər-ˌfyüm How to pronounce perfume (audio) , (ˌ)pər-ˈfyüm How to pronounce perfume (audio) \

Definition of perfume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the scent of something sweet-smelling
2 : a substance that emits a pleasant odor especially : a fluid preparation of natural essences (as from plants or animals) or synthetics and a fixative used for scenting


per·​fume | \ (ˌ)pər-ˈfyüm How to pronounce perfume (audio) , ˈpər-ˌfyüm \
perfumed; perfuming

Definition of perfume (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to fill or imbue with an odor

Synonyms & Antonyms for perfume

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for perfume


fragrance, perfume, scent, redolence mean a sweet or pleasant odor. fragrance suggests the odors of flowers or other growing things. the fragrance of pine perfume may suggest a stronger or heavier odor. the perfume of lilacs scent is very close to perfume but of wider application because more neutral in connotation. scent-free soaps redolence implies a mixture of fragrant or pungent odors. the redolence of a forest after a rain

Examples of perfume in a Sentence

Noun She smelled the different perfumes at the store. the perfume of fresh flowers filled the room Verb The meal included a delicate fish perfumed with butter and herbs. a time when it was common for men to perfume their hair
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Earlier this month, D'Amelio launched her first perfume, titled Born Dreamer, and spoke to Allure about the venture. Jack Irvin,, 27 June 2022 Her homemade perfume—a blend of essential oils like neroli, geranium, rosemary, and black pepper—provides the perfect finishing touch. Kiana Murden, Vogue, 25 May 2022 Designer Rei Kawakubo expanded the reach of her buzzy fashion brand Comme des Garçons with this robust perfume line that evokes the same quirky luxury as her wardrobe staples. Tiffany Dodson, Harper's BAZAAR, 6 May 2022 In the eaSaint Phalle was in the midst of creating her eponymous perfume while sharing a design studio with La Prairie. Jennifer Lee, Forbes, 2 May 2022 Miranda even gave fans a little nudge at checking out her perfume, Idyllwind. Chaise Sanders, Country Living, 3 Feb. 2022 This fall, Addison Rae did what many celebrities and influencers have done before and launched a perfume line. Emily Jensen, Allure, 27 Jan. 2022 His legendary perfume, Angel, has also been a best-seller for decades. Catherine Garcia, The Week, 23 Jan. 2022 Basically, vabbing is the practice of women are using their vaginal fluids as a form of makeshift perfume, dabbing it behind their ears and on their wrists in an effort to attract suitors. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 25 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb After two years in the making, Being Frenshe debuts with an assortment of 45 products ranging from bath powder to perfume oil. Jackie Fields,, 25 July 2022 These are an interesting case, but typically perfume oils blend fragranced oil and unscented oil to help smells stick to your skin for a while. Justin Fenner, Robb Report, 30 June 2022 Smaller, independent brands are often more creative in their approach to perfume making, highlighting individual ingredients and notes or using a story to attract customers. Rachel Strugatz, New York Times, 23 June 2022 Roses climb up old stone walls, brighten small squares and even perfume the Roland Garros stadium, where the French Open tennis tournament is held. Mary Winston Nicklin, Washington Post, 17 June 2022 Begin by sautéeing it with your aromatics at the start of cooking, add it midway to perfume the entire stew or braise, or do both. Rachel Gurjar, Bon Appétit, 16 May 2022 The sweet-smelling white blooms on the Graceful Gardenia ($39.99-$49.99) perfume a room. cleveland, 6 May 2022 The stench wafting from the tree's billows of white blossoms has been compared to perfume gone wrong, rotting fish, chlorine, and a cheese sandwich left in a car for a week. CBS News, 22 Apr. 2022 This version is lovely, with floral cardamom to perfume it. Washington Post, 11 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of perfume


circa 1593, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1546, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for perfume


Middle French perfum, probably from Old Occitan, from perfumar to perfume, from per- thoroughly (from Latin) + fumar to smoke, from Latin fumare, from fumus smoke — more at fume

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Time Traveler for perfume

Time Traveler

The first known use of perfume was in 1546

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Dictionary Entries Near perfume



perfumed cherry

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Statistics for perfume

Last Updated

11 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Perfume.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for perfume


per·​fume | \ ˈpər-ˌfyüm How to pronounce perfume (audio) \

Kids Definition of perfume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a liquid used to make a person smell nice
2 : a pleasant smell : fragrance


per·​fume | \ pər-ˈfyüm How to pronounce perfume (audio) \
perfumed; perfuming

Kids Definition of perfume (Entry 2 of 2)

: to add a usually pleasant odor to : have the odor of

More from Merriam-Webster on perfume

Nglish: Translation of perfume for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of perfume for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about perfume


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