ebony

[ eb-uh-nee ]
/ ˈɛb ə ni /

noun, plural eb·on·ies.

a hard, heavy, durable wood, most highly prized when black, from various tropical trees of the genus Diospyros, as D. ebenum of southern India and Sri Lanka, used for cabinetwork, ornamental objects, etc.
any tree yielding such wood.
any of various similar woods or trees.
a deep, lustrous black.

adjective

Also ebon. made of ebony.
of a deep, lustrous black.

Origin of ebony

1590–1600; earlier hebeny; see ebon; -y perhaps after ivory
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ebony

British Dictionary definitions for ebony

ebony

/ (ˈɛbənɪ) /

noun plural -onies

any of various tropical and subtropical trees of the genus Diospyros, esp D. ebenum of S India, that have hard dark wood: family EbenaceaeSee also persimmon
the wood of such a tree, much used for cabinetwork
  1. a black colour, sometimes with a dark olive tinge
  2. (as adjective)an ebony skin

Word Origin for ebony

C16 hebeny, from Late Latin ebeninus from Greek ebeninos, from ebenos ebony, of Egyptian origin
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 ebony

ebony


n.

1590s, from hebenyf (late 14c.), perhaps a Middle English misreading of Latin hebeninus "of ebony," from Greek ebeninos, from ebenos "ebony," probably from Egyptian hbnj or another Semitic source. Figurative use to suggest intense blackness is from 1620s. As an adjective, from 1590s. French ébène, Old High German ebenus (German Ebenholz) are from Latin ebenus.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper