sump·​tu·​ous ˈsəm(p)(t)-shə-wəs How to pronounce sumptuous (audio)
: extremely costly, rich, luxurious, or magnificent
sumptuous banquets
a sumptuous residence
sumptuously adverb
sumptuousness noun

Did you know?

The word sumptuous typically describes things that can only be had at some significant expense, a fact that keeps the modern English word tied to its Latin source: sumptus, meaning "expense." Another English adjective, sumptuary, has the same Latin source, but today is found mostly in the context of sumptuary laws, largely historical regulations limiting extravagant expenditures and habits, especially on moral or religious grounds.

Examples of sumptuous in a Sentence

the cruise ship claims to offer sumptuous furnishings, exquisitely prepared cuisine, and stellar entertainment
Recent Examples on the Web European comic books — specifically, the Franco-Belgian school spearheaded by the Tintin character and his creator Hergé — are both a multimillion Euro industry and a sumptuous art form with dozens of successful franchises waiting to be developed. Ernesto Lechner, The Hollywood Reporter, 17 Feb. 2024 The colossal kitchen/family room combination, which spans some 5,000 square feet on its own, has a coffered ceiling and is complete with a sumptuous lounge area. James McClain, Robb Report, 16 Feb. 2024 Made in the most sumptuous 22mm Mulberry silk, and tailored in a way that turns a classic nightshirt into something surprisingly glamorous, elegant cuff piping and mother-of-pearl buttons make this a sleepwear dream. Margaux Lushing, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 Choose from sumptuous flavors like strawberries, ginger and Amarena cherries. ABC News, 6 Feb. 2024 And, lastly, there is the show’s ridiculously sumptuous scenic design. Carolina A. Miranda, Los Angeles Times, 3 Feb. 2024 What’s astonishing about this show, though — aside from the central performances, which are superb, and Guettel’s anxious, spiky, sumptuous score, which grabs hold of us and doesn’t let go — is the way its devastating chic snuggles right up to catastrophic self-destruction. Laura Collins-Hughes, New York Times, 29 Jan. 2024 Gutierrez loved exploring this humble food, which people around the world turn into sumptuous dishes. Andrea Weigl, Charlotte Observer, 31 Jan. 2024 Neo-cumbia music hums in the background as the sun begins to set, sumptuous pinks and blues blooming across the sky. Catherine Tansey, Travel + Leisure, 27 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sumptuous.' 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, from Latin sumptuosus, from sumptus

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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


Dictionary Entries Near sumptuous

Cite this Entry

“Sumptuous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


sump·​tu·​ous ˈsəm(p)-ch(ə-w)əs How to pronounce sumptuous (audio)
: involving large expense : lavish, luxurious
a sumptuous feast
sumptuously adverb
sumptuousness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on sumptuous

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