Origin of golden

Middle English word dating back to 1225–75; see origin at gold, -en2
Related formsgold·en·ly, adverbgold·en·ness, nounun·gold·en, adjective
Can be confusedgilded golden

Synonyms for golden


[gohl-duh n]


a city in central Colorado. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for golden

Contemporary Examples of golden

Historical Examples of golden

  • The edge of the garment was curiously wrought with golden palm leaves.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • The whole rested on a golden image of Atlas, bending beneath the weight.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • July 25, 1889, Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone celebrated their "Golden Wedding."

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • I was palsied with doubt, and the golden moments were fleeting, were fleeting.

  • That is nothing at all in comparison with Rico's wedding in the 'Golden Sun.'

    Rico and Wiseli

    Johanna Spyri

British Dictionary definitions for golden



of the yellowish or brownish-yellow metallic colour of goldgolden hair
made from or largely consisting of golda golden statue
happy or prosperousgolden days
(sometimes capital) (of anniversaries) the 50th in a seriesGolden Jubilee; golden wedding
informal very successful or destined for successthe golden girl of tennis
extremely valuable or advantageousa golden opportunity
Derived Formsgoldenly, adverbgoldenness, noun
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 golden

c.1300, "made of gold," from gold + -en (2); replacing Middle English gilden, from Old English gyldan. Gold is one of the few Modern English nouns that form adjectives meaning "made of ______" by adding -en (e.g. wooden, leaden, waxen, olden); Old English also had silfren "made of silver," stænen "made of stone."

As a color from late 14c. Figurative sense of "excellent, precious, best" is from late 14c. Golden mean "avoidance of excess" translates Latin aurea mediocritas (Horace). Golden age, period of past perfection, is from 1550s, from a concept found in Greek and Latin writers; in sense of "old age" it is from 1961. The moralistic golden rule earlier was the golden law, so called from 1670s.

Do not do unto others as you would that they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same. [George Bernard Shaw, 1898]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper