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See more synonyms for ensconce on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), en·sconced, en·sconc·ing.
  1. to settle securely or snugly: I found her in the library, ensconced in an armchair.
  2. to cover or shelter; hide securely: He ensconced himself in the closet in order to eavesdrop.
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Origin of ensconce

First recorded in 1580–90; en-1 + sconce2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

situate, stash, locate, plant, set, shield, conceal, establish, fix, cache, cover, protect, seat, nestle, settle, place, install, shelter, station, ditch

Examples from the Web for ensconced

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He bestowed his companion in the tonneau and ensconced himself beside her.

    Ruggles of Red Gap

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Code found Elsa ensconced with a book under the awning amidships.

    The Harbor of Doubt

    Frank Williams

  • Molly, ensconced in a window, was already busy with her own.

    The Long Roll

    Mary Johnston

  • Juve had ensconced himself in a huge easy chair in a corner of the room.


    Pierre Souvestre

  • Roger was up, though still coughing, and ensconced in his study.

    Roger Ingleton, Minor

    Talbot Baines Reed

British Dictionary definitions for ensconced


verb (tr; often passive)
  1. to establish or settle firmly or comfortablyensconced in a chair
  2. to place in safety; hide
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Word Origin

C16: see en- 1, sconce ²
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 ensconced



1580s, "to cover with a fort," from en- (1) "make, put in" + sconce "small fortification, shelter," perhaps via French, probably from Dutch schans "earthwork" (cf. Middle High German schanze "bundle of sticks"), of uncertain origin. Related: Ensconced.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper