Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

2017 Word of the Year

cinnabar

[sin-uh-bahr] /ˈsɪn əˌbɑr/
noun
1.
a mineral, mercuric sulfide, HgS, occurring in red crystals or masses: the principal ore of mercury.
2.
red mercuric sulfide, used as a pigment.
3.
bright red; vermillion.
Origin of cinnabar
1350-1400
1350-1400; < Latin cinnabaris < Greek kinnábari < ?; replacing Middle English cynoper < Medieval Latin, Latin as above
Related forms
cinnabarine
[sin-uh-buh-reen, -ber-in, -bahr-ahyn, -een] /ˈsɪn ə bəˌrin, -bər ɪn, -ˌbɑr aɪn, -in/ (Show IPA),
cinnabaric
[sin-uh-bar-ik] /ˌsɪn əˈbær ɪk/ (Show IPA),
adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for cinnabar
Historical Examples
  • At the mention of the name of Purdy, cinnabar Joe started perceptibly.

    Prairie Flowers

    James B. Hendryx
  • Out of the tail of his eye cinnabar Joe saw his wife step from the doorway.

    Prairie Flowers

    James B. Hendryx
  • cinnabar removed his hat and ran his fingers through his hair.

    Prairie Flowers

    James B. Hendryx
  • cinnabar Joe placed his hands on his hips and stared at the girl in astonishment.

    Prairie Flowers

    James B. Hendryx
  • An' if that there gal wasn't safe at cinnabar Joe's, I'd see that he got him tonight.

    Prairie Flowers

    James B. Hendryx
  • I've got cinnabar, here, for a witness that upon certain occasions I've be'n sober.

    Prairie Flowers

    James B. Hendryx
  • Only one deposit of cinnabar has so far been discovered, that was in 1867.

    British Borneo

    W. H. Treacher
  • For I have seen the Roof-ridge red in the sunlight as if it were painted with cinnabar.

    The House of the Wolfings William Morris
  • Them men as works in cinnabar sooner or later gets salviated.

  • cinnabar is an object which constrains us to think it as heavy and red.

British Dictionary definitions for cinnabar

cinnabar

/ˈsɪnəˌbɑː/
noun
1.
a bright red or brownish-red mineral form of mercuric sulphide (mercury(II) sulphide), found close to areas of volcanic activity and hot springs. It is the main commercial source of mercury. Formula: HgS. Crystal structure: hexagonal
2.
the red form of mercuric sulphide (mercury(II) sulphide), esp when used as a pigment
3.
a bright red to reddish-orange; vermilion
4.
a large red-and-black European moth, Callimorpha jacobaeae: family Arctiidae (tiger moths, etc)
Word Origin
C15: from Old French cenobre, from Latin cinnābaris, from Greek kinnabari, of Oriental origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for cinnabar
n.

mid-15c., "red or crystalline form of mercuric sulphide," also applied to other ores of mercury, originally with reference to its use as a pigment; from Old French cinabre (13c.), from Late Latin cinnabaris, from Greek kinnabari, of oriental origin (cf. Persian zanjifrah in the same sense). Also used 14c.-17c. of red resinous juice of a certain Eastern tree, which was believed to be a mixture of dragon's and elephant's blood.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for cinnabar

Word Value for cinnabar

12
16
Scrabble Words With Friends