[boot-n-eer, boo-tuh n-yair]


a flower or small bouquet worn, usually by a man, in the buttonhole of a lapel.

Origin of boutonniere

1875–80; < French boutonnière buttonhole (bouton button + -ière suffix for things that facilitate the use of that denoted by the stem < Latin -āria -ary Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for boutonniere

Historical Examples of boutonniere

  • No woman ever combined a carnation and a rosebud into a boutonniere.

  • Seven violets so treated will be sufficient for one boutonniere.

    Candy-Making Revolutionized

    Mary Elizabeth Hall

  • He lifted the lapel of his coat, carrying the boutonniere to his nose.

    The White Moll

    Frank L. Packard

  • It is a little stringy for a boutonniere, but it fills the modern-trained eye as no other flower can fill it.

  • Then as she glanced at the lapel of his coat she continued: "And you must have a boutonniere; may I select something for you?"

    The Heatherford Fortune

    Mrs. Georgie Sheldon

British Dictionary definitions for boutonniere



another name for buttonhole (def. 2)

Word Origin for boutonniere

C19: from French: buttonhole, from bouton button
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 boutonniere

1877, from French boutonnière, from bouton (see button (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper