perfume

noun
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

perfume

verb
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

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Synonyms & Antonyms for perfume

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for perfume

Noun

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
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Frances coolly sprays the table’s centerpiece with perfume, then lights it on fire, sending every employee in the restaurant scrambling and shouting about her insanity. Alison Willmore, Vulture, "If Only the Rest of French Exit Were As Good As Michelle Pfeiffer’s Performance," 2 Apr. 2021 Philosophy’s popular Fresh Cream perfume has a delicate scent that reminds us of sweet treats in the oven. Cheyann Neades, Better Homes & Gardens, "16 Affordable Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for Any Type of Mom—All Under $25," 7 Apr. 2021 This gourmand perfume oil features Madagascar Vanilla, hand-harvested by local villagers and enriched with baobab oil to nourish the skin. Jennifer Ford, Forbes, "This Lovely Lineup Of Best Women’s Fragrances Is An Instant Mood Booster," 6 Apr. 2021 The economies are deeply connected, too: In normal times, tourists break away from the Italian Adriatic beaches for day trips to San Marino, whose territory is a mix of medieval fortresses, perfume shops and duty-free electronics stores. Washington Post, "San Marino, the micronation within Italy, stokes envy with speedy Russian-supplied vaccine campaign," 2 Apr. 2021 As clean perfume brand Henry Rose points out, synthetic formulas often do less damage—both to the planet’s resources and to allergy-prone consumers. Jeffrey Westbrook, Marie Claire, "21 Sustainable Beauty Innovations for 2021," 1 Apr. 2021 As for the fragrance, Avec Amour is an oil perfume that can easily be chucked in even the smallest mini bags—the scent is musky and soft. Jessica Matlin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Makeup Artist Violette Just Launched The Coolest Products," 30 Mar. 2021 Equally as important for the perfume rollout was the packaging, which pays homage to the fan-favorite classic backpack. Blake Newby, Essence, "MCM's Signature Fragrance Is Made For The Traveler In All Of Us," 23 Mar. 2021 Tiff Benson, a perfume blogger and one of Mr. Powell’s best friends, remembered their regular dinners and salsa dancing sessions as a source of joy and support for Benson, who is Black. New York Times, "Chasing the Scent of a Brooklyn Fragrance Lover," 17 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Just a gentle touch of hummingbird sage or Cleveland sage, for instance, could perfume an entire balcony. Jeanette Marantos, Los Angeles Times, "Your bird feeder is canceled. Attract birds with these 13 native plants instead," 15 Apr. 2021 Adelita’s basic corn tortillas, also available in mini street-taco size, are some of the best in the city with a potent aroma of freshly nixtamalized and stone-ground corn that will perfume your kitchen when they get heated on a comal or griddle. Paul Stephen, San Antonio Express-News, "The 5 best shops to buy tortillas in San Antonio along Blanco from Hildebrand to Castle Hills," 7 Apr. 2021 Local apple, pear and peach brandies, which perfume and lighten cake batters and pie fillings, have become key ingredients for him. New York Times, "America’s First Moonshine, Applejack, Returns in Sleeker Style," 2 Feb. 2021 And if that doesn’t give you a big enough bay leaf hit, the leaves are baked in between each roll, which perfume the rolls even more and lend it a beautiful presentation. Ben Mims, Los Angeles Times, "Go wild with bay leaves for the best yeast rolls," 12 Nov. 2020 In ancient Egypt, lavender was used during the mummification process to perfume the corpse. Andrea Beck, Better Homes & Gardens, "5 Facts About Lavender That Will Make You Love this Fragrant Herb Even More," 10 July 2020 As the name suggests, aromas of blackberries and baking spice perfume the glass, followed by flavors of cassis and berries. Dave Mcintyre Columnist, Washington Post, "At $12, these two white wines prove that pinot grigio doesn’t always mean boring," 10 July 2020 The most reverent of recipes call for whole-belly quahogs and clam liquor, ingredients that perfume the hot-out-of-the-fryer dough with rich, briny steam. Kat Craddock, Saveur, "Rhode Island Clamcakes—Yes, Crisp Clam Doughnuts—Are the Perfect Taste of Summer," 10 June 2016 That idea has since evolved into the American Chinese takeout-style egg drop soup, made from instant chicken stock, thickened with a cornstarch slurry, and perfumed with sesame oil, white pepper, and a dash of light soy sauce. Lucas Sin, Bon Appétit, "Any Soup Can Be Egg Drop Soup If You Want It to Be," 15 May 2020

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.

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First Known Use of perfume

Noun

circa 1593, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1546, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for perfume

Noun

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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Learn More about perfume

Time Traveler for perfume

Time Traveler

The first known use of perfume was in 1546

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Statistics for perfume

Last Updated

25 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

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

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More Definitions for perfume

perfume

noun

English Language Learners Definition of perfume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a liquid substance that you put on your body in small amounts in order to smell pleasant
: a pleasant smell

perfume

verb

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

literary : to fill or cover (something) with a pleasant smell
somewhat formal : to put perfume in or on (something)

perfume

noun
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

perfume

verb
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

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