• synonyms


  1. made smooth and glossy: a figurine of polished mahogany.
  2. naturally smooth and glossy: polished pebbles on the beach.
  3. refined, cultured, or elegant: a polished manner.
  4. flawless; skillful; excellent: a polished conversationalist.
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Origin of polished

First recorded in 1325–75, polished is from the Middle English word polist. See polish, -ed2
Related formsun·pol·ished, adjectivewell-pol·ished, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for well-polished

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • We may illustrate this by the image of a well-polished mirror.

  • The parlour was cool and airy, with well-polished floor-boards, but no carpet.


    Archibald Marshall

  • Fancy a picture in which the shadows were as black as well-polished boots!

  • Freddy started a little, and looked meditatively at the tips of his well-polished boots.

    The Grell Mystery

    Frank Froest

  • The superintendent tapped the step impatiently with the tip of his well-polished American boot, and his brow puckered.

    The Grell Mystery

    Frank Froest

British Dictionary definitions for well-polished


  1. accomplisheda polished actor
  2. impeccably or professionally donea polished performance
  3. (of rice) having had the outer husk removed by milling
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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 well-polished



late 14c., "made smooth;" early 15c., "elegant;" past participle adjective from polish (v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper