• synonyms


[os-ten-tey-shuh s, -tuh n-]
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  1. characterized by or given to pretentious or conspicuous show in an attempt to impress others: an ostentatious dresser.
  2. (of actions, manner, qualities exhibited, etc.) intended to attract notice: Lady Bountiful's ostentatious charity.
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Origin of ostentatious

First recorded in 1650–60; ostentat(ion) + -ious
Related formsos·ten·ta·tious·ly, adverbos·ten·ta·tious·ness, nounun·os·ten·ta·tious, adjectiveun·os·ten·ta·tious·ly, adverb

Synonyms for ostentatious

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

Related Words for ostentatious

gaudy, swank, splashy, flamboyant, extravagant, classy, garish, jaunty, conspicuous, glittery, pretentious, boastful, chichi, crass, dashing, egotistic, flatulent, fussy, gay, grandiose

Examples from the Web for ostentatious

Contemporary Examples of ostentatious

Historical Examples of ostentatious

  • "He just stopped me to say it's been the best year he ever had," she explained, with ostentatious vanity.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • “Force of personality,” he repeated, with ostentatious calm.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • "You ain't eat a thing," said he, with an ostentatious kindliness.

    Tiverton Tales

    Alice Brown

  • Miss Madden welcomed the diversion by rising with ostentatious vigour.

    The Market-Place

    Harold Frederic

  • The process of conversion was, for decency's sake, protracted and ostentatious.

British Dictionary definitions for ostentatious


  1. characterized by pretentious, showy, or vulgar display
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Derived Formsostentatiously, adverb
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 ostentatious


1701, from ostentation + -ous. Earlier in a similar sense were ostentative (c.1600); ostentive (1590s). Related: Ostentatiously; ostentatiousness (1650s).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper