[mwahr, mawr, mohr]

Origin of moire

1650–60; < French < English mohair


[mwah-rey, mawr-ey, mohr-ey; French mwa-rey]
  1. (of silks and other fabrics) presenting a watery or wavelike appearance.
  1. a design pressed on silk, rayon, etc., by engraved rollers.
  2. any silk, rayon, etc., fabric with a watery or wavelike appearance.
  3. Printing. an interference pattern of dots appearing in the print of process color.

Origin of moiré

From French, dating back to 1810–20; see origin at moire, -ee Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for moire

Historical Examples of moire

British Dictionary definitions for moire


  1. a fabric, usually silk, having a watered effect

Word Origin for moire

C17: from French, earlier mouaire, from mohair


  1. having a watered or wavelike pattern
  1. such a pattern, impressed on fabrics by means of engraved rollers
  2. any fabric having such a pattern; moire
  3. Also: moiré pattern a pattern seen when two geometrical patterns, such as grids, are visually superimposed

Word Origin for moiré

C17: from French, from moire mohair
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 moire

"watered silk," 1650s, from French moire (17c.); see mohair. As an adjective, moiré "having the appearance of watered silk," it is attested from 1823.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper