- a cut and polished precious stone or pearl fine enough for use in jewelry.
- something likened to or prized as such a stone because of its beauty or worth: His painting was the gem of the collection.
- a person held in great esteem or affection.
- muffin(def 1).
- British Printing. a 4-point type of a size between brilliant and diamond.
- to adorn with or as with gems; begem.
- Jewelry. noting perfection or very high quality: gem color; a gem ruby.
Origin of gem
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for gem
Baby cigarette “No worry of cancer with this cigarette costume,” the description for this gem reads.Sexy Ebola Nurse & More of the Year’s Worst Halloween Costumes
October 30, 2014
Take for instance this gem of a story written about the horrific Baltimore fire of 1904.The Stacks: H.L. Mencken on the 1904 Baltimore Fire
October 4, 2014
Yet another example is Belle Isle, a gorgeous 982-acre gem floating in the Detroit River.The Republican Occupation of Detroit
July 30, 2014
Check out this angry-faced selfie with Geoff Cameron, a true World Cup gem.Team USA Lost, but Tim Howard Is a Winner
July 1, 2014
The ice cream remains reason enough to detour off I-84 for a visit to this mid-20th century gem.The Real Cheeseburger Paradise
Jane & Michael Stern
June 22, 2014
My young travelling companion is enthusiastic about this gem of Germany.Vivian Grey
Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
Since such gift the gem gleamed bright on the breast of the queen.Beowulf
This production is a gem, and always attracts the wonder and amazement of foreigners.Roman Catholicism in Spain
Holding toward the lamp a glass, clear as crystal, with luster like a gem.The Strollers
Frederic S. Isham
By the way, your editorial explanation of Astounding Stories was a gem.
- a precious or semiprecious stone used in jewellery as a decoration; jewel
- a person or thing held to be a perfect example; treasure
- a size of printer's type, approximately equal to 4 point
- NZ a type of small sweet cake
- (tr) to set or ornament with gems
Word Origin and History for gem
Old English gimm "precious stone, gem, jewel," also "eye," from Latin gemma "precious stone, jewel," originally "bud," perhaps from the root *gen- "to produce," or from PIE *gembh- "tooth, nail." Of persons, from late 13c. Forms in -i-, -y- were lost early 14c., and the modern form of the word probably representing a Middle English borrowing from Old French gemme (12c.). As a verb, from c.1600, "to adorn with gems;" mid-12c. as "to bud."