Definition of ewer in English:



  • A large jug with a wide mouth, formerly used for carrying water for someone to wash in.

    • ‘The women moved quickly and surely around the tent, a ewer of scented water, and a bowl appearing, along with towels and her change of clothes.’
    • ‘The ewers in Plate XIII, for example, are both inspired by Near Eastern models.’
    • ‘Various black-clad servants bustled about the room and began carrying in trays of food and ewers of water and wine.’
    • ‘Three men lugged in a wooden tub, followed by a stream of servants bearing ewers of hot water.’
    • ‘Figures and devices were painted and displayed on saddles, bridles, and collars, on censers, on goblets and cups, and flagons, on dishes and ewers, in tents, on curtains and on chairs, and upon all articles and utensils.’
    • ‘The list is substantial, totalling more than 15,500 ounces and including many decorated ewers and basins, livery pots, cups and salts, as well as large quantities of plain utilitarian plate.’
    • ‘‘Aye, that's so - thank God,’ Marion said briskly as she poured water into the bronze ewer on the table near the curtained bed.’
    • ‘The ewer was excavated from the tomb of Li Xian, outside Guyuan Ningxia.’
    • ‘It was more their way to arrive unannounced, to appear swimming in the water trough between one dip of the ewer and the next, and then to fly away over the yard in a flurry of laughter.’
    • ‘It also contains the only known examples from Timurid Iran of large glazed ceramic ewers.’
    • ‘Water trickles from a tributary spring into a ewer held against the outlet by a maiden gracefully leaning forward as she grasps the stem of an olive bush to steady herself.’
    • ‘The first, wheel-engraving, was often centred on ancient forms, typically featuring Homeric themes from Flaxman applied to amphora and oinochee shaped decanters, ewers and vases.’
    • ‘The ewer and basin in Plates VI and VII are the only French objects among the early diplomatic gifts in the Kremlin collection and were presented by the earl of Carlisle probably because of their provenance rather than their stylishness.’
    • ‘The collection has evocative frames of early Christians going on yaatra to Jerusalem which give intimate nuanced details of mediaeval modes of dress, functional items like water jugs, ewers etc.’
    • ‘There are ewers like eagles and cockerels, incense-burners like lynxes and a water-pourer in the form of an unfortunate humped cow (properly a zebu) which suckles its calf while a lion bites its hump.’
    • ‘A decorative ewer strung on the line in this work reappears in Kilim All Totem discharging small Op-art patterns from its perch atop a miraculous stack of oil barrels, porcelain vessels and colorful cartoon patches.’
    • ‘It contained eight cabinets containing chiefly silver-gilt objects: 24 basins, 20 ewers, 215 tureens and bowls, 819 plates of different sizes, 231 spoons and forks, 78 saltcellars, 59 candelabra, and 145 drinking vessels.’
    • ‘This ewer, along with the rest of the service, weighing nearly seven thousand ounces altogether, descended in the Methuen family until 1920.’
    • ‘The other dishes and the ewers and basins are all signed by or have been convincingly attributed to a skilled but anonymous engraver known from his monogram signature as ‘P over M’.’
    • ‘A number of significant pieces, such as a silver-gilt ewer and basin made by George Wickes for Frederick Prince of Wales, first acquired only a few years ago, did not arouse much enthusiasm on their reappearance on the market.’
    earthenware container, glass container, pot, crock, urn, pitcher, jug, flask, decanter, carafe, flagon, ewer, drum, canister
    View synonyms


Late Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French ewer, variant of Old French aiguiere, based on Latin aquarius of water from aqua water.