[ reeth ]
/ riθ /

noun, plural wreaths [reeth z, reeths] /riðz, riθs/.

a circular band of flowers, foliage, or any ornamental work, for adorning the head or for any decorative purpose; a garland or chaplet.
any ringlike, curving, or curling mass or formation: a wreath of clouds.
(in stair building)
  1. a curved section of a handrail.
  2. Also called wreath·piece. a curved section of a string.

verb (used with or without object)

Origin of wreath

before 1000; Middle English wrethe, Old English writha something wound or coiled; akin to writhe

Related forms

wreath·like, adjective

Can be confused

wraith wreath wreathe writhe
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for wreath

British Dictionary definitions for wreath


/ (riːθ) /

noun plural wreaths (riːðz, riːθs)

a band of flowers or foliage intertwined into a ring, usually placed on a grave as a memorial or worn on the head as a garland or a mark of honour
any circular or spiral band or formation
a spiral or circular defect appearing in porcelain and glassware

Derived Forms

wreathless, adjectivewreathlike, adjective

Word Origin for wreath

Old English wrǣth, wrǣd; related to Middle Low German wrēden to twist. See writhe
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