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tinsel

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Part or all of this page has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.

English

Etymology

French étincelle (“spark”), from Old French estincelle, from [[w:Template:lang:la language|Template:lang:la]][[Category:Template:lang:la derivations]] scintilla; compare scintillate, stencil

Pronunciation

Noun

Singular
tinsel

Plural
-

tinsel (-)
  1. A shining material used for ornamental purposes; especially, a very thin, gauzelike cloth with much gold or silver woven into it; also, very thin metal overlaid with a thin coating of gold or silver, brass foil, or the like.
    • John Dryden:
      Who can discern the tinsel from the gold?
  2. Very thin strips of a glittering, metallic material used as a decoration, and traditionally, draped at Christmas time over streamers, paper chains and the branches of Christmas trees.
  3. Anything shining and gaudy; something superficially shining and showy, or having a false luster, and more gay than valuable.
    • William Cowper:
      O happy peasant! O unhappy bard! His the mere tinsel, hers the rich reward.

Adjective

tinsel (comparative {{{1}}}, superlative {{{2}}})

Positive
tinsel

Comparative
{{{1}}}

Superlative
{{{2}}}

  1. Showy to excess; gaudy; specious; superficial.

Verb

Infinitive
to tinsel

Third person singular
tinsels

Simple past
tinselled (UK) or tinseled (US)

Past participle
-

Present participle
tinselling (UK) or tinseling (US)

to tinsel (third-person singular simple present tinsels, present participle tinselling (UK) or tinseling (US), simple past and past participle tinselled (UK) or tinseled (US))
  1. (transitive) To adorn with tinsel; to deck out with cheap but showy ornaments; to make gaudy.
  2. (Template loop detected: Template:context 1) To give something a false sparkle.

Derived terms

See also

References

  • Webster 1913

Elsewhere on the web

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