or lu·cern



Origin of lucerne

1620–30; alteration (by association with Latin lucerna lamp) of French luzerne < Provençal luzerno glowworm (the plant was so called in allusion to its bright seeds); akin to Old Provençal luzerna lamp < Vulgar Latin *lūcerna, for Latin lucerna. See lucid


[loo-surn; French ly-sern]


a canton in central Switzerland. 576 sq. mi. (1490 sq. km).
the capital of this canton, on Lake of Lucerne.
Lake of. Also called Lake of the Four Forest Cantons. a lake in central Switzerland. 24 miles (39 km) long; 44 sq. mi. (114 sq. km).
German Luzern. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for lucerne

Historical Examples of lucerne

  • If he had known it, it was with the Dance of Death on the bridge of Lucerne.

    The Armourer's Prentices

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • Should I really have cared so much for Lucerne and Nuremberg if you hadn't been with me?

  • Once he has been in Paris, where I met him, and once to Lucerne for a fortnight.

    A Spirit in Prison

    Robert Hichens

  • And, in any event, on such a journey Lucerne must come first.


    Beatrice Fortescue

  • They always have boats there to take people that come along this road to Lucerne.

British Dictionary definitions for lucerne



British another name for alfalfa



a canton in central Switzerland, northwest of Lake Lucerne: joined the Swiss Confederacy in 1332. Pop: 352 300 (2002 est). Area: 1494 sq km (577 sq miles)
a city in central Switzerland, capital of Lucerne canton, on Lake Lucerne: tourist centre. Pop: 59 496 (2000)
Lake Lucerne a lake in central Switzerland: fed and drained chiefly by the River Reuss. Area: 115 sq km (44 sq miles)German name: Vierwaldstättersee
German name (for senses 1 and 2): Luzern
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