[ ruh-koh-koh, roh-kuh-koh ]
/ rəˈkoʊ koʊ, ˌroʊ kəˈkoʊ /
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a style of architecture and decoration, originating in France about 1720, evolved from Baroque types and distinguished by its elegant refinement in using different materials for a delicate overall effect and by its ornament of shellwork, foliage, etc.
a homophonic musical style of the middle 18th century, marked by a generally superficial elegance and charm and by the use of elaborate ornamentation and stereotyped devices.
(initial capital letter)Fine Arts.
  1. noting or pertaining to a style of painting developed simultaneously with the rococo in architecture and decoration, characterized chiefly by smallness of scale, delicacy of color, freedom of brushwork, and the selection of playful subjects as thematic material.
  2. designating a corresponding style of sculpture, chiefly characterized by diminutiveness of Baroque forms and playfulness of theme.
of, pertaining to, in the manner of, or suggested by rococo architecture, decoration, or music or the general atmosphere and spirit of the rococo: rococo charm.
ornate or florid in speech, literary style, etc.
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Origin of rococo

First recorded in 1830–40; from French, akin to rocaille “use of pebbles and shells in ornamental work; pebble-work”; see origin at rocaille
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use rococo in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for rococo

/ (rəˈkəʊkəʊ) /

noun (often capital)
a style of architecture and decoration that originated in France in the early 18th century, characterized by elaborate but graceful, light, ornamentation, often containing asymmetrical motifs
an 18th-century style of music characterized by petite prettiness, a decline in the use of counterpoint, and extreme use of ornamentation
any florid or excessively ornamental style
denoting, being in, or relating to the rococo
florid or excessively elaborate

Word Origin for rococo

C19: from French, from rocaille, from roc rock 1
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

Cultural definitions for rococo

[ (ruh-koh-koh, roh-kuh-koh) ]

A style of baroque art and architecture popular in Europe during the eighteenth century, characterized by flowing lines and elaborate decoration.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.