Definition of potpourri in English:


Syllabification: pot·pour·ri
Pronunciation: /ˌpōpəˈrē, ˌpōpo͝oˈrē

noun (plural potpourris)

  • 1A mixture of dried petals and spices placed in a bowl or small sack to perfume clothing or a room.
    More example sentences
    • From room deodorizers and potpourri to non-organic breakfasts and sheets that reek of bleach, the typical overnight stay can seem so toxic you'd almost rather stay home.
    • Secondly, the waiting room smelled of fresh potpourri, not disinfectant spray.
    • To his relief, he found on opening the box that it was just a bowl for holding potpourri.
  • 1.1A mixture of things, especially a musical or literary medley: he played a potpourri of tunes from Gilbert and Sullivan
    More example sentences
    • Programmes ceased to be potpourris: the orchestral concert, with two halves each about an hour long, became the norm everywhere during the third quarter of the 19th century.
    • It is likely that the success of that ballet encouraged other ballet companies to stage their own ballets based on Offenbach potpourris.
    • The guitarist duo unveiled a potpourri of music blending it with African and Latin influences.


early 17th century (denoting a stew made of different kinds of meat): from French, literally 'rotten pot'.

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