pa·​vil·​ion | \ pə-ˈvil-yən How to pronounce pavilion (audio) \

Definition of pavilion

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a large often sumptuous tent the white pavilions of the Turkish irregular cavalry— A. H. Layard
b : something resembling a canopy or tent tree ferns spread their delicate pavilions— Blanche E. Baughan
2a : a part of a building projecting from the rest … rang the bell of the little pavilion— Gertrude Stein
b : one of several detached or semidetached units into which a building is sometimes divided
3a : a usually open sometimes ornamental structure in a garden, park, or place of recreation that is used for entertainment or shelter a dance pavilion a band pavilion
b : a temporary structure erected at an exposition by an individual exhibitor visited the Chinese pavilion at the international exposition
4 : the lower faceted part of a brilliant below the girdle (see girdle entry 1 sense 2) — see brilliant illustration


pavilioned; pavilioning; pavilions

Definition of pavilion (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to furnish or cover with or put in a pavilion

Synonyms for pavilion

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of pavilion in a Sentence

Noun The World's Fair had numerous pavilions. the park's pavilions may be rented for wedding receptions and other social gatherings
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The waterfront pavilion is across from a hotel where the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is scheduled to hold its national meeting from Nov. 15 to Nov. 18. Michael Kunzelman,, 5 Nov. 2021 Another $117,000 will be spent on the Tolleston pavilion which will get a new roof, new steel doors, new glass block and stucco. Carrie Napoleon,, 14 Dec. 2021 Sitting at the heart of the World Expo site in Dubai, the pavilion of host country the United Arab Emirates (UAE) sports one of the most attention-grabbing designs at an event that is packed with architectural marvels. Jacopo Prisco, CNN, 7 Dec. 2021 The mayor added the city intends at a future date to add a pavilion to Cricket Park. John Benson, cleveland, 1 Dec. 2021 The 26th meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, or COP26, featured a pavilion that held dozens of events discussing the health threats of climate change. Nada Hassanein, USA TODAY, 27 Nov. 2021 Evidently, Fisher had moved on: the fibreglass ribs of a pseudo-Gothic pavilion were scattered on the grass near the swimming pool, awaiting construction. Nicola Twilley, The New Yorker, 22 Nov. 2021 This pavilion, by the way, is part of the Milstein Hospital Building at Columbia, which is right down the street from Columbia’s Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital. Katie Hafner, Scientific American, 18 Nov. 2021 Varela said police officers entered to try to protect the pavilion and get the inmates in the other areas to return to their cells. The Associated. Press, Arkansas Online, 14 Nov. 2021

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pavilion


Middle English pavilloun, pavillioun, from Anglo-French, from Latin papilion-, papilio butterfly; perhaps akin to Old High German fīfaltra butterfly

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Time Traveler for pavilion

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The first known use of pavilion was in the 13th century

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Dictionary Entries Near pavilion



pavilion roof

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Last Updated

10 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pavilion.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for pavilion



English Language Learners Definition of pavilion

: a building in a park or garden that usually has open sides and is used for parties, concerts, or other events
: a temporary building that is used at public events and exhibitions
: a large building that is used for sports or public events


pa·​vil·​ion | \ pə-ˈvil-yən How to pronounce pavilion (audio) \

Kids Definition of pavilion

1 : a very large tent
2 : a building usually with open sides that is used as a place for entertainment or shelter in a park or garden


pa·​vil·​ion | \ pə-ˈvil-yən How to pronounce pavilion (audio) \

Medical Definition of pavilion

1 : pinna
2 : a detached or semidetached part of a hospital devoted to a special use a maternity pavilion a nuclear medicine pavilion

More from Merriam-Webster on pavilion

Nglish: Translation of pavilion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pavilion for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about pavilion


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