oeu·​vre ˈu̇-vrə How to pronounce oeuvre (audio)
ˈœ- How to pronounce oeuvre (audio)
plural oeuvres ˈu̇-vrə How to pronounce oeuvre (audio)
ˈœ- How to pronounce oeuvre (audio)
: a substantial body of work constituting the lifework of a writer, an artist, or a composer
a catalogue of Rembrandt's oeuvre
scrupulously examines Dickens' oeuvre in order to demonstrate how his convictions helped to determine the shape of his novels G. J. Worth

Example Sentences

a novel that occupies a relatively minor position in the author's oeuvre
Recent Examples on the Web But creating envelope-eviscerating music that is singularly her own is only part of Galás far-reaching artistic oeuvre. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 Nov. 2022 For a body of work so vastly populated with dead bodies, the Christie oeuvre may ironically be the most peaceful, predictable, comforting space in twentieth-century literature. Scott Bradfield, The New Republic, 1 Nov. 2022 With a charming supporting performance by a then-unknown Sandra Bullock as his wide-eyed sidekick, Lt. Lenina Huxley, Demolition Man is a must-watch for fans of Stallone's action movie oeuvre. Andrew Walsh, EW.com, 8 Nov. 2022 In fact, amongst Gurira’s oeuvre, Michonne is probably second in popularity only to General Okoye, the fierce leader of the Dora Milaje, an all-women army dedicated to protecting the fictional African kingdom of Wakanda. Michael Cuby, SELF, 27 Oct. 2022 Whereas other artists use paint, pastels, charcoal, clay -- and more -- the defining material in Tunick's oeuvre is skin. Christian Edwards, CNN, 25 Oct. 2022 Warhol’s technical skill and range of styles that would usher in a singular multidisciplinary oeuvre. Natasha Gural, Forbes, 3 Oct. 2022 The reward of those labors was an exquisite immersion in Godard’s oeuvre. John Penner, Los Angeles Times, 15 Sep. 2022 Shot on Arri Alexa Mini, the story is an inventive genre crossover, where Hitchcockian traits mix with the motif of the double, well known from Brian De Palma’s oeuvre. Anna Tatarska, Variety, 6 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History


borrowed from French, literally, "work," going back to Old French ovre, going back to Latin opera "activity, effort, attention, work," collective derivative from oper-, opus "work, effort, product of labor" — more at opus

First Known Use

1889, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of oeuvre was in 1889

Dictionary Entries Near oeuvre

Cite this Entry

“Oeuvre.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oeuvre. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

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