from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Polished, made shiny by rubbing (especially with a burnisher).
  • verb Simple past tense and past participle of burnish.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective made smooth and bright by or as if by rubbing; reflecting a sheen or glow


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • "Elsewhere a corner seemed to be reserved for the commoner kinds of lily, of a neat pink or white like rocket-flowers, washed clean like porcelain with housewifely care while, a little farther again, others, pressed close together in a veritable floating flower-bed, suggested garden pansies that had settled here like butterflies and were fluttering their blue and burnished wings over the transparent depths of this watery garden—this celestial garden, too, for it gave the flowers a soil of a color more precious, more moving than their own, and, whether sparkling beneath the water-lilies in the afternoon in a kaleidoscope of silent, watchful, and mobile contentment, or glowing, towards evening, like some distant haven, with the roseate dreaminess of the setting sun, ceaselessly changing yet remaining always in harmony, around the less mutable colours of the flowers themselves, with all that is most profound, most evanescent, most mysterious—all that is infinite—in the passing hour, it seemed to have made them blossom in the sky itself."

    -- Swann's Way by Marcel Proust, translated by C.K. Scott Moncrieff and Terence Kilmartin, p 185 of the Vintage International paperback edition

    January 1, 2008

  • Most far in blue, aloft,

    Clouds steered a burnished drift

    from "Song for a Summer's Day," Sylvia Plath

    April 14, 2008