• synonyms


  1. covered or highlighted with gold or something of a golden color.
  2. having a pleasing or showy appearance that conceals something of little worth.
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Origin of gilded

before 1000; gild1 + -ed2; replacing Middle English gild, Old English gegyld
Related formsnon·gild·ed, adjectiveun·gild·ed, adjective
Can be confusedgilded golden
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ungilded

Historical Examples

  • She has spoken the truth, the ungilded truth—how seldom I hear it!

    Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc

    Mark Twain

  • It was a rough meeting, composed of rude elements, in a large but ungilded hall in Whitechapel.

  • She did not stir to greet me; only transferred her stare from the gilded idol to dusty and ungilded me.

  • Their lofty neighbour Bolt Head on the left remained as yet ungilded, and retained its gray.

  • For the first time I am commencing to see him in his true colors, ungilded by my ideals.

    The Secret of the Sundial

    Mildred A. Wirt, AKA Ann Wirt

Word Origin and History for ungilded



1560s (late Old English had gegylde); in modern use the more dignified past participle of gild (q.v.). Shakespeare's lilies were never gilded; the quote ("King John," iv.2) is, "To gild refined gold, to paint the lily."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper