[ koosh-uhn ]
See synonyms for: cushioncushionedcushioning on

  1. a soft bag of cloth, leather, or rubber, filled with feathers, air, foam rubber, etc., on which to sit, kneel, or lie.

  2. anything similar in form, used to dampen shocks or to prevent excessive pressure or chafing.

  1. something to absorb or counteract a shock, jar, or jolt, as a body of air or steam.

  2. something that lessens the effects of hardship, distress, or the like: His inheritance was a cushion against unemployment.

  3. Anatomy, Zoology. any part or structure resembling a cushion.

  4. the resilient raised rim encircling the top of a billiard table.

  5. a pad worn under the hair by women.

  6. a portion of a radio or television script that can be adjusted in length or cut out altogether in order to end the program on time.

  7. Ice Hockey, Canadian. the iced surface of a rink.

  8. a pillow used in lacemaking.

  9. a leather pad on which gold leaf is placed preparatory to gilding.

verb (used with object)
  1. to place on or support by a cushion.

  2. to furnish with a cushion or cushions.

  1. to cover or conceal with, or as if with, a cushion.

  2. to lessen or soften the effects of: to cushion the blow to his pride.

  3. to suppress (complaints, lamentations, etc.) by quietly ignoring.

  4. to check the motion of (a piston or the like) by a cushion, as of steam.

  5. to form (steam or the like) into a cushion.

Origin of cushion

1300–50; Middle English cuisshin<Anglo-French; Middle French coussin ≪ Latin cōx(a) hip + -īnus-ine1; see coxa

synonym study For cushion

1. Cushion, pillow, bolster agree in being cases filled with a material more or less resilient, intended to be used as supports for the body or parts of it. A cushion is a soft pad used to sit, lie, or kneel on, or to lean against: cushions on a sofa; cushions on pews in a church. A pillow is a bag or case filled with feathers, down, or other soft material, usually to support the head: to sleep with a pillow under one's head. A bolster is a firm pillow, long enough to extend the width of a bed and used as head support, with or without a pillow.

Other words for cushion

Other words from cushion

  • cush·ion·less, adjective
  • cush·ion·like, adjective
  • un·cush·ioned, adjective
  • well-cushioned, adjective

Words Nearby cushion Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use cushion in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for cushion


/ (ˈkʊʃən) /

  1. a bag made of cloth, leather, plastic, etc, filled with feathers, air, or other yielding substance, used for sitting on, leaning against, etc

  2. something resembling a cushion in function or appearance, esp one to support or pad or to absorb shock

  1. the resilient felt-covered rim of a billiard table

  2. another name for pillow (def. 2)

  3. short for air cushion

  4. a capital, used in Byzantine, Romanesque, and Norman architecture, in the form of a bowl with a square top

  1. to place on or as on a cushion

  2. to provide with cushions

  1. to lessen or suppress the effects of

  2. to protect, esp against hardship or change

    • to check the motion of (a mechanism) gently, esp by the compression of trapped fluid in a cylinder

    • to provide with a means of absorbing shock

Origin of cushion

from Latin culcita mattress

Derived forms of cushion

  • cushiony, adjective

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