Origin of burnishMiddle English burnishen from Old French burniss-, extended stem of brunir, to make brown from brun: see brunet
A man burnishes the lights of his car.
An example of burnish is to shine a bronze statue.
transitive verbbur·nished, bur·nish·ing, bur·nish·es
- To make smooth or glossy by rubbing; polish.
- To rub with a tool that serves especially to smooth or polish.
- To improve or make more impressive: achievements that burnished her reputation.
Origin of burnishMiddle English burnishen from Old French burnir burniss- variant of brunir from brun shining of Germanic origin ; see bher-2 in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present burnishes, present participle burnishing, simple past and past participle burnished)
From Old French burnir, from its stem burniss-, variant of brunir (“to polish, make brown”).
- Bobr'; the root bhru has given "brown," and, through Romanic, "bronze" and "burnish."