qua·​tre·​foil ˈka-tər-ˌfȯi(-ə)l How to pronounce quatrefoil (audio)
: a conventionalized representation of a flower with four petals or of a leaf with four leaflets
: a 4-lobed foliation in architecture

Illustration of quatrefoil

Illustration of quatrefoil
  • quatrefoil 2

Examples of quatrefoil in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The resulting pattern mimics the quatrefoil floral motif in Venetian architecture, particularly in the Doges Palace. Allen Farmelo, Robb Report, 9 Apr. 2024 The 1970s fountain on the north plaza was replaced with a new one, also of quatrefoil design, and a fountain was added on the east plaza. Scott D. Pierce, The Salt Lake Tribune, 6 Sep. 2023 This one is made of sterling silver plated in 14k gold, and double sided with the quatrefoil design on one side and the LOVE inscription with the Jane Win logo on the other. Quincy Bulin, Better Homes & Gardens, 5 Sep. 2023 Its features include soaring curved ceilings, arched moldings and distinctive quatrefoil tracery windows. The Indianapolis Star, 16 June 2023 Made of durable vinyl, these 12x12-inch tiles come in a set of 10 and feature an elegant quatrefoil pattern. Jessica Bennett, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 Dec. 2022 Just in case, Van Cleef & Arpels began using the Alhambra talisman in 1968—a four-leaf clover motif inspired by the Moorish quatrefoil—and every year the jewelry maison releases a special holiday pendant. Michael Solomon, Forbes, 10 Dec. 2021 Inside, it is decorated with a medallion at the bottom and a quatrefoil motif surrounded by flowers. Dave Collins, courant.com, 17 Mar. 2021 In the center of the bowl, which measures six inches in diameter, is a formalized quatrefoil motif encircled by a wreath of flowers and leaves. Bryan Hood, Robb Report, 18 Mar. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'quatrefoil.' 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 quaterfoil set of four leaves, from Anglo-French quatre + Middle English -foil (as in trefoil)

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near quatrefoil

Cite this Entry

“Quatrefoil.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quatrefoil. Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

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