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See also: Ornament



From Middle English ornament, from Old French ornement, from Latin ornamentum (equipment, apparatus, furniture, trappings, adornment, embellishment), from ornāre, present active infinitive of I equip, adorn. The verb is derived from the noun.



ornament (countable and uncountable, plural ornaments)

  1. An element of decoration; that which embellishes or adorns.
    • Tennyson
      Like that long-buried body of the king / Found lying with his urns and ornaments.
    • 1919, P. G. Wodehouse, My Man Jeeves
      I'm a bit short on brain myself; the old bean would appear to have been constructed more for ornament than for use.
    • 2012 March 1, Brian Hayes, “Pixels or Perish”, in American Scientist[1], volume 100, number 2, page 106:
      Drawings and pictures are more than mere ornaments in scientific discourse. Blackboard sketches, geological maps, diagrams of molecular structure, astronomical photographs, MRI images, the many varieties of statistical charts and graphs: These pictorial devices are indispensable tools for presenting evidence, for explaining a theory, for telling a story.
  2. A Christmas tree decoration.
  3. (music) A musical flourish that is unnecessary to the overall melodic or harmonic line, but serves to decorate or "ornament" that line.
  4. (Christianity, in the plural) The articles used in church services.

Related terms[edit]


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ornament (third-person singular simple present ornaments, present participle ornamenting, simple past and past participle ornamented)

  1. To decorate.
    We will ornament the windows with trim to make the room seem brighter.
  2. To add to.
    The editor ornamented his plain writing, making it fancier but less clear.




Further reading[edit]



ornament m (plural ornaments)

  1. ornament