[ toh-pee-er-ee ]
/ ˈtoʊ piˌɛr i /


(of a plant) clipped or trimmed into fantastic shapes.
of or relating to such trimming.

noun, plural to·pi·ar·ies.

topiary work; the topiary art.
a garden containing such work.

Origin of topiary

1585–95; < Latin topiārius pertaining to landscape-gardening or to ornamental gardens, equivalent to topi(a) (plural) artificial landscape (< Greek tópia (singular topion), diminutive of tópos place) + -ārius -ary Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for topiary

British Dictionary definitions for topiary


/ (ˈtəʊpɪərɪ) /


of, relating to, or characterized by the trimming or training of trees or bushes into artificial decorative animal, geometric, or other shapes


plural -aries
  1. topiary work
  2. a topiary garden
the art of topiary
Derived Formstopiarian (ˌtəʊpɪˈɛərɪən), adjectivetopiarist, noun

Word Origin for topiary

C16: from French topiaire, from Latin topia decorative garden work, from Greek topion little place, from topos place
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 topiary



1590s, from Latin topiarius "of or pertaining to ornamental gardening," from topia "ornamental gardening," from Greek topia, plural of topion, originally "a field," diminutive of topos "place" (see topos). The noun is first recorded 1908, from the adjective.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper