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See more synonyms for ornate on Thesaurus.com
  1. elaborately or sumptuously adorned, often excessively or showily so: They bought an ornate Louis XIV sofa.
  2. embellished with rhetoric; florid or high-flown: an ornate style of writing.
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Origin of ornate

1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin ornātus well-equipped, adorned, orig. past participle of ornāre to equip; see -ate1
Related formsor·nate·ly, adverbor·nate·ness, nounun·or·nate, adjectiveun·or·nate·ly, adverbun·or·nate·ness, noun


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for ornateness

Historical Examples

  • As we should expect, there is a fairly steady movement from simplicity to ornateness.

    Old Picture Books

    Alfred W. Pollard

  • There was a striving for effect, with ornateness and extravagance, and finally the art passed out entirely.

  • The ornateness of architecture appears in the East and West in nearly equal measure.

    Prowling about Panama

    George A. Miller

  • The writing masters of that time cared far more for ornateness than for verity, or even legibility.

    A Captain in the Ranks

    George Cary Eggleston

  • It was the time when ornateness of figure and poeticalness of diction were regarded as essentials of style.

British Dictionary definitions for ornateness


  1. heavily or elaborately decorated
  2. (of style in writing) overembellished; flowery
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Derived Formsornately, adverbornateness, noun

Word Origin

C15: from Latin ornāre to decorate
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 ornateness



early 15c., from Latin ornatus "fitted out, furnished, supplied; adorned, decorated, embellished," past participle of ornare "adorn, fit out," from stem of ordo "order" (see order (n.)). Earliest reference is to literary style. Related: Ornately; ornateness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper