One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A chain or garland of flowers, leaves, or ribbons, hung in a curve as a decoration.
garland, chain, lei, swathe, swag, wreath, chaplet, loopView synonyms
- ‘They also paint them red, the colour of happiness, and string them in festoons for wedding decorations.’
- ‘Decorations often take up quite a bit of time at home, but the experts do it in a jiffy, for they have a range of colourful festoons and sprightly buntings in stock, all ready to be hung up at the party venue.’
- ‘Every bedroom has its own Christmas tree and festoons of decorations.’
- ‘Only flicker bulbs and festoons were seen around the premises.’
- ‘Colourful festoons and flags marked the inauguration of Sanjeevanam by K.J. Yesudoss on Monday morning.’
- ‘Non-biodegradable plastic festoons would decorate the medians and would pose an adventurous journey for road users.’
- ‘I suspect they are a strictly local phenomenon, hanging around in festoons in The Weald.’
- ‘The road is decorated with colourful festoons whenever a new film is released and invariably there will be a mad rush for these movies.’
- ‘On this, the Swarovski crystal and pearls are strung like a festoon of flowers, with hanging clusters terminating in big pieces of aqua quartz.’
- ‘Above it, pink nylon falls in decorative festoons around a chandelier hanging from the ceiling.’
- ‘The flag must not be used as a festoon, rosette or bunting or in any other manner of decoration.’
- ‘The few trees that have been planted on the road side and road medians are utilised by political parties and companies to hang their banners and festoons, at the expense of their natural beauty.’
- ‘To provide a festival spirit, the spiral-bound projects of the students replaced the banyan leaves as festoons.’
- ‘Even statues of Annamayya and Ramanuja, leave alone those of Mahatma Gandhi and Ambedkar, are enveloped in yellow festoons.’
- ‘Houses are decorated with colourful festoons, stars and cut-outs depicting the Lord Jesus' life and, of course, the quintessential Christmas tree.’
- ‘All streets leading to the holy river are decorated with colorful festoons and banners.’
- ‘It was a cosy atmosphere inside Coffee Pot, which was decked up with balloons, festoons and buntings, besides a decorated Christmas tree and crib set.’
- ‘Both doors and windows were adorned with festoons that harmonized with the seats and were adorned with the monogram ‘JB,’ as were the porcelain jardinières in which Josephine put flowers.’
- ‘Meanwhile the factory of Joseph Terry and Sons Ltd was transformed by a lavish display of festoons, streamers and flags.’
- ‘Today, we will not bat an eyelid when we see the festoons go up on February 14.’
- 1.1 A carved or moulded ornament representing a festoon.
- ‘Thereafter, ‘fine festoon candlesticks’ make fairly regular appearances, supplied to other clients, so disseminating a refined French style through the repertoire.’
- ‘The mold-blown scallop shell vase in Plate XIII is decorated with festoons reminiscent of Phoenician glass.’
- ‘The painted body of the stately Beekman coach is adorned with the family's coat of arms, crest, and applied floral festoons.’
- ‘At the centre of the front of Croker's enormous sideboard is a carved vase full of flowers flanked by great seaweedy festoons of fruit, flowers and foliage.’
2A Eurasian butterfly or moth patterned with dark arcs on a lighter background.
a large yellowish butterfly with black and red markings (Zerynthia and other genera, family Papilionidae).
a small brown moth (Apoda avellana, family Limacodidae).
- ‘These festoons were one of the more common and accommodating species in the area, enabling me to get lots of nice shots.’
- ‘The Spanish festoon is a wonderfully exotic butterfly close-up, though in flight its colours blur into a buttery mixture of all the shades on its wings and it looks much less brilliant.’
verb[with object]often be festooned with
Adorn (a place) with chains, garlands, or other decorations.‘the staffroom was festooned with balloons and streamers’
decorate, adorn, ornament, trim, dress up, array, deck, deck out, hang, loop, thread, cover, drape, swathe, garland, wreathe, bedeck, beribbon, bespangleView synonyms
- ‘An adjoining reception area is festooned with lights and full of platters of cheese.’
- ‘The hall was lined with great columns down both sides, and the whole area was festooned with banners and garlands of flowers.’
- ‘The immediate area is festooned with posters calling for the clean-up.’
- ‘The sprawling garden was festooned with fancy illuminations and aesthetically decorated flower baskets.’
- ‘The city, towns, villages and countryside are festooned in the blue and white.’
- ‘Its five floors of offices are festooned with flags and cartoon posters of the company's ant mascot.’
- ‘A lot of the cars streaming down the road are festooned with magnetized yellow ribbons.’
- ‘Original bunting and flags which festooned the streets of Malton during the Coronation in 1952 have been found in an attic in the town.’
- ‘On the M8 at Ballieston a flyover was festooned with a banner ‘Welcome to hell, Arthur’.’
- ‘English streets were festooned with the red and white flag of St George.’
- ‘Wrought-iron balconies are festooned with hanging baskets overflowing with ferns.’
- ‘His bedroom was festooned with pictures of James Dean, and he would turn cartwheels over broken glass for a kind word from his heroes.’
- ‘On the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar the streets of York were festooned with innumerable flags floating in the breeze.’
- ‘Today, the roundabouts are festooned with decorations and blue and yellow lights.’
- ‘As someone who has had a recycled cardboard tree for the last few years (thank you, Muji), and whose mother habitually festoons decorations on random house plants, I have some fundamental misgivings about Christmas trees.’
- ‘From the entrance gates to the chimney tops, they all have been festooned with strings of coloured and bright white bulbs.’
- ‘He recalled popping up to York when he was an Oxford student and marvelling at all the hanging baskets of flowers that festooned the city.’
- ‘I passed shop-fronts which were festooned with spooky Halloween decorations.’
- ‘Every mall in Beijing is festooned with Christmas decorations.’
- ‘The family's immaculate home is festooned with about 100 sympathy cards and a dozen bouquets.’
Mid 17th century: from French feston, from Italian festone ‘festal ornament’, from festum, (plural) festa ‘feast’.
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