re·​fur·​bish | \ ri-ˈfər-bish How to pronounce refurbish (audio) \
refurbished; refurbishing; refurbishes

Definition of refurbish

transitive verb

: to brighten or freshen up : renovate

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Other Words from refurbish

refurbisher noun
refurbishment \ ri-​ˈfər-​bish-​mənt How to pronounce refurbishment (audio) \ noun

Did You Know?

If you're wondering if "refurbish" implies the existence of an earlier "furbish," you are on the right track. "Furbish" was borrowed into English in the 14th century from Anglo-French furbiss-, a distant relative of an Old High German word meaning "to polish." In its earliest uses "furbish" also meant "to polish," but it developed an extended sense of "renovate" shortly before English speakers created "refurbish" with the same meaning in the 17th century. These days "refurbish" is the more common of the two words, although "furbish" does continue to be used.

Examples of refurbish in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The Yorks moved in in 2004, and have since refurbished the property extensively. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Princess Eugenie's Royal Wedding Reception Venue Is Nothing Like Meghan and Harry's," 28 July 2018 While today, many of those original A1 audio-animatronics have been refurbished with more advanced machinery, there are still a few left in both U.S. parks. Matt Blitz, Popular Mechanics, "The A1000 Is Disney's Advanced Animatronic Bringing the Galaxy's Edge Star Wars Theme Park To Life," 28 Feb. 2019 The Middle East Galleries have already been refurbished and reopened. Stephan Salisbury,, "Visit the Penn Museum's Sphinx this weekend, or wait another 4 to 6 years," 5 July 2018 The owners’ bath has been refurbished with travertine and marble and includes a dry sauna and a steam shower. Judy Rose, Detroit Free Press, "Philanthropists' Mid-century ranch in Franklin was made for art," 16 June 2018 After author Brad Meltzer and the society raised funds through an international auction, the childhood home of Jerry Siegel has been refurbished and a commemorative plaque and fence installed outside the Siegel house at 10622 Kimberley Ave. Michael Sangiacomo,, "Superman at 80, still fighting for truth, justice and the American way," 15 Apr. 2018 The building’s patio has been refurbished and declared a public space. Judy Cantor-navas, Billboard, "Valtonyc Speaks Out Against Spain's Censorship Laws at Barcelona's No Callarem Conference," 13 Apr. 2018 One has been refurbished and is popular with riders. Chelsey Lewis, USA TODAY, "Eight scenic and historic train rides in Wisconsin," 3 Apr. 2018 One has been refurbished and is popular with riders. Chelsey Lewis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "8 scenic and historical train rides in Wisconsin," 29 Mar. 2018

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

1611, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near refurbish



refunding bond





Statistics for refurbish

Last Updated

11 May 2019

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Time Traveler for refurbish

The first known use of refurbish was in 1611

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English Language Learners Definition of refurbish

: to repair and make improvements to (something, such as a building)

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Comments on refurbish

What made you want to look up refurbish? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a sum of money that is sent as a payment

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