• synonyms


[sahy-pruh s]
  1. any of several evergreen coniferous trees constituting the genus Cupressus, having dark-green, scalelike, overlapping leaves.
  2. any of various other coniferous trees of allied genera, as the bald cypress.
  3. any of various unrelated plants resembling the true cypress.
  4. the wood of these trees or plants.
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Origin of cypress1

before 1000; Middle English, Old English cypresse < Late Latin cypressus, apparently blend of Latin cupressus and cyparissus < Greek kypárissos; replacing Middle English cipres < Anglo-French, Old French < Late Latin, as above


or cy·prus

[sahy-pruh s]
noun Obsolete.
  1. a fine, thin fabric resembling lawn or crepe, formerly used in black for mourning garments and trimmings.
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Origin of cypress2

1350–1400; Middle English cipre(s), cyprus, after Cyprus


[sahy-pruh s]
  1. a city in SW California.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cypress

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The Princess smiled on the children as she came down the cypress trail.

    The Trail Book

    Mary Austin

  • The cypress has few branches, and its leaf is long and narrow.

    The History of Louisiana

    Le Page Du Pratz

  • See that cypress, waving from the breeze which is now stirring, and look!

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

  • The sepulchre was square, with stone walls supported by cypress beams.

    Aztec Land

    Maturin M. Ballou

  • He waxed eloquent to the cypress roots upon the conduct of the war.

    The Long Roll

    Mary Johnston

British Dictionary definitions for cypress


  1. any coniferous tree of the N temperate genus Cupressus, having dark green scalelike leaves and rounded cones: family CupressaceaeSee also Leyland cypress
  2. any of several similar and related trees, such as the widely cultivated Chamaecyparis lawsoniana (Lawson's cypress), of the western US
  3. any of various other coniferous trees, esp the swamp cypress
  4. the wood of any of these trees
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Word Origin

Old English cypresse, from Latin cyparissus, from Greek kuparissos; related to Latin cupressus



  1. a fabric, esp a fine silk, lawn, or crepelike material, often black and worn as mourning
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Word Origin

C14 cyprus from the island of Cyprus
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 cypress


type of evergreen tree (sacred to Pluto), late 12c., from Old French cipres (12c., Modern French cyprès), from Late Latin cypressus, from Latin cupressus, from Greek kyparissos, probably from an unknown pre-Greek Mediterranean language. Perhaps related to Hebrew gopher, name of the tree whose wood was used to make the ark (Gen. vi:14).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper