[ kahr-ney-shuhn ]
/ kɑrˈneɪ ʃən /
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any of numerous cultivated varieties of the clove pink, Dianthus caryophyllus, having long-stalked, fragrant, usually double flowers in a variety of colors: the state flower of Ohio.
pink; light red.
Obsolete. the color of flesh.
having the color carnation.
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Origin of carnation

1525–35; <Late Latin carnātiōn- (stem of carnātiō) fleshlikeness, hence flesh-color, equivalent to Latin carn- (stem of carō) flesh + -ātiōn--ation
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023


What does carnation mean?

A carnation is a fragrant flower that’s commonly reddish-pink but is found in a variety of colors, including white, pale pink, red, and even purple. Some varieties are striped.

Another name for the carnation is clove pink. Its scientific name is Dianthus caryophyllus.

Carnations are some of the most popular flowers to give as gifts. They are often given to mothers on Mother’s Day.

Different colors of carnations are said to have different meanings when presented as gifts. For example, red carnations are said to represent longing or admiration.

The carnation is the state flower of Ohio. It’s also the January birth flower (a flower that’s associated with a particular month in the same way as a birthstone).

The word carnation can also be used as a word for a pink or light red color like that of the flower.

Example: My prom corsage was made of lovely pink carnations.

Where does carnation come from?

The first records of the word carnation come from around 1530. It comes from a French word meaning “flesh color,” ultimately from the Latin carō, meaning “flesh.”

Carnations are herbaceous perennial plants with fringed petals. They’re thought to be native to the Mediterranean region and have been cultivated for thousands of years.

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What are some synonyms for carnation?

What are some words that share a root or word element with carnation?

What are some words that often get used in discussing carnation?

How is carnation used in real life?

Carnations are popular to give as gifts.

Try using carnation!

True or False?

Carnations are always pink.

How to use carnation in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for carnation

/ (kɑːˈneɪʃən) /

Also called: clove pink a Eurasian caryophyllaceous plant, Dianthus caryophyllus, cultivated in many varieties for its white, pink, or red flowers, which have a fragrant scent of cloves
the flower of this plant
  1. a pink or reddish-pink colour
  2. (as adjective)a carnation dress
(often plural) a flesh tint in painting

Word Origin for carnation

C16: from French: flesh colour, from Late Latin carnātiō fleshiness, from Latin carō flesh
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