How to pronounce


  • American Pronunciation: In American English, "chinoiserie" is pronounced as /ʃiːnˌwɑːzəˈriː/. It has three syllables, with the stress on the last syllable: sheen-WAH-zuh-ree. The "sheen" sounds like "sheen," "WAH" as in "what," and "zuh-ree" closely resembles "zoo-ree."
  • British Pronunciation: In British English, "chinoiserie" can be pronounced similarly, /ʃiːnˌwɑːzəˈriː/. However, the British pronunciation might emphasize a clearer enunciation, and the "r" in the last syllable might be slightly softer.

Definition of


Chinoiserie (noun) refers to the imitation or adaptation of Chinese artistic styles, especially in Western art, furniture, and architecture.

Example 1: The Rococo style of the 18th century incorporated elements of chinoiserie, such as pagoda-shaped rooftops and delicate floral motifs.
Example 2: The restaurant was decorated with elaborate chinoiserie, including hand-painted silk screens and intricately carved woodwork.
Example 3: Many collectors seek out antique chinoiserie pieces to add an exotic touch to their homes.
Example 4: The fashion designer's latest collection was inspired by the intricate patterns and colors of traditional chinoiserie.
Example 5: The term chinoiserie is derived from the French word "chinois," meaning Chinese, and was popularized during the 17th and 18th centuries.

What does it mean


The term "chinoiserie" originates from the French word "chinois," meaning "Chinese." The suffix "-erie," common in French, implies a characteristic or quality, suggesting a collection or array of items with a Chinese aesthetic. This reflects the European enthusiasm and fascination with Asian culture and artistic styles, which were considered exotic and fashionable during the time chinoiserie became popular. The usage of this term underscores how cultural elements are adapted and stylized across different contexts, blending artistic imagination with cultural interpretation.

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