Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A set of matched jewelry or other ornaments.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A set of jewellery to be worn together.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An ornament or decoration for the person; esp., a decoration consisting of a set of ornaments to be used together.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A set of corresponding articles of decorative character; also, the total amount of decoration produced in any one case by similar means, as a set of embroideries or lace trimmings for a dress; hence, a set of ornaments intended to be worn together, or matching with one another: as, a parure of jewels.
  • n. Ornament; adornment.

Etymologies

French, from Old French, adornment, from parer, to adorn; see pare.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old (and modern) French parure, from parer ‘pare’. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • I have not the least respect for your feathers, Miss Fanshawe; and especially the peacock’s eyes you call a parure: very pretty things, if you had bought them with money which was your own, and which you could well spare, but not at all pretty under present circumstances.”

    Villette

  • They say that in the time of Kassapa Buddha she gave cloth for robes to twenty thousand priests, also thread and needles and dyeing material, all her own property; and the parure was the result of this liberality.

    The Story of Visakha. III. The Order. Translated from the Dhammapada, and from Buddhaghosa's comment.

  • As Sotheby's tells it, the stones in the parure helped save the Russian Empire back in 1711, when the country was on the verge of defeat by the Ottomans at the battle of Pruth River.

    Geneva Auctions Glitter

  • Denmark's Crown Princess Mary made a wiser choice in a sea-foam green pleated gown, and not surprisingly, chose to wear the diamond and ruby parure which once belonged to Queen Ingrid of Denmark, a former Swedish princess.

    Princess Victoria's Wedding <![CDATA[&]]> The Triumph Of Style In Sweden (PHOTOS, POLL)

  • A demi-parure of gold mounted tiger's teeth was among her favorite ornaments, since the tigers had been shot by her beloved, (but mostly absent), father.

    Michael Henry Adams: Michelle Obama's High Style for Hard Times

  • She had a parure of the choicest giant pearls, two diamond parures.

    THE DIAMOND

  • She had a parure of emeralds and one of fabulous rubies.

    THE DIAMOND

  • She wore a parure of diamonds and emeralds—a sight to remember!

    Women I Have Dressed (and Undressed!)

  • This semi-mystery of the parure was not solved till two or three days afterwards, when she came to make a voluntary confession.

    Villette

  • Her ornaments were sundry necklaces of various beads, large red and white, and small blue and pink porcelains; a leaf, probably by way of amulet, was bound to a string round the upper arm; and wrists and ankles were laden with heavy rings of brass and copper, the parure of the great in Fán-land.

    Two Trips to Gorilla Land and the Cataracts of the Congo

Comments

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  • a French word commonly used by vintage costume jewelry collectors to describe a set of three or more matching pieces/adornments; two matched pieces are sometimes referred to as a demi-parure. For jewelry, a typical parure consists of a necklace, earrings, brooch and a bracelet (or two bracelets). In Victorian times, two bracelets was the norm. Today, many people wear wristwatches, so a modern parure includes a single bracelet.

    September 11, 2009