beauty

[byoo-tee]

noun, plural beau·ties.


Origin of beauty

1225–75; Middle English be(a)ute < Old French beaute; replacing Middle English bealte < Old French beltet < Vulgar Latin *bellitāt- (stem of *bellitās), equivalent to Latin bell(us) fine + -itāt- -ity
Related formsnon·beau·ty, noun, plural non·beau·ties.

Synonyms for beauty

Antonyms for beauty

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for beauties

Contemporary Examples of beauties

Historical Examples of beauties

  • I will attempt no description of the beauties that met them at every turn.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • What is there that I can do with all the beauties of my parlors?

  • Comrade Ossipon was familiar with the beauties of its journalistic style.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • And so this wench is to stock the parish with beauties, I hope.

  • They loved the beauties of nature, and had a keen sense for discovering them.

    English Villages

    P. H. Ditchfield


British Dictionary definitions for beauties

beauty

noun plural -ties

the combination of all the qualities of a person or thing that delight the senses and please the mind
a very attractive and well-formed girl or woman
informal an outstanding example of its kindthe horse is a beauty
informal an advantageous featureone beauty of the job is the short hours
informal, old-fashioned a light-hearted and affectionate term of addresshello, my old beauty!

interjection

(NZ ˈbjuːdɪ) an expression of approval or agreementAlso (Scot, Austral, and NZ): you beauty

Word Origin for beauty

C13: from Old French biauté, from biau beautiful; see beau
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

Word Origin and History for beauties

beauty

n.

early 14c., "physical attractiveness," also "goodness, courtesy," from Anglo-French beute, Old French biauté "beauty, seductiveness, beautiful person" (12c., Modern French beauté), earlier beltet, from Vulgar Latin bellitatem (nominative bellitas) "state of being handsome," from Latin bellus "pretty, handsome, charming," in classical Latin used especially of women and children, or ironically or insultingly of men, perhaps from PIE *dw-en-elo-, diminutive of root *deu- "to do, perform, show favor, revere" (see bene-). Famously defined by Stendhal as la promesse de bonheur "the promise of happiness."

[I]t takes the one hundred men in ten million who understand beauty, which isn't imitation or an improvement on the beautiful as already understood by the common herd, twenty or thirty years to convince the twenty thousand next most sensitive souls after their own that this new beauty is truly beautiful. [Stendhal, "Life of Henry Brulard"]

Replaced Old English wlite. Concrete meaning "a beautiful woman" is first recorded late 14c. Beauty sleep "sleep before midnight" is attested by 1850. Beauty spot is from 1650s. Beauty parlor is from 1894.

The sudden death of a young woman a little over a week ago in a down-town "beauty parlor" has served to direct public attention to those institutions and their methods. In this case, it seems, the operator painted on or injected into the patron's facial blemish a 4-per-cent cocaine solution and then applied an electrode, the sponge of which was saturated with carbolized water. ["The Western Druggist," October 1894]

Beauté du diable (literally "devil's beauty") is used as a French phrase in English from 1825.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with beauties

beauty

In addition to the idiom beginning with beauty

  • beauty is only skin deep

also see:

  • that's the beauty of
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.