Definition of cherry in English:


Line breaks: cherry
Pronunciation: /ˈtʃɛri

noun (plural cherries)

  • 1A small, soft round stone fruit that is typically bright or dark red: a bowl of cherries [as modifier]: cherry pie
    More example sentences
    • His mother would place a bowl of bright red cherries or shiny pistachios before us and we picked at the food as we chatted lazily.
    • In 1920, Midwestern states produced a variety of crops such as apples, cherries, grapes, tomatoes, potatoes, and strawberries.
    • My snack is Granny Smith apples, grapes or cherries and low-fat or fat-free cottage cheese.
  • 2 (also cherry tree) The tree that bears the cherry.
    • Genus Prunus, family Rosaceae: several species, the edible kinds being derived from the sweet (or wild) cherry (P. avium) and the sour (or morello) cherry (P. cerasus)
    More example sentences
    • Nylon netting draped over your cherry tree or blueberry bushes will keep birds away.
    • You might for example, plant pale violet tulips at the base of a pink-flowering cherry tree.
    • Looking out across the pond one sees a cherry tree in palest pink, and, farther away, the glistening white trunks of an old birch tree.
  • 2.1 (also cherrywood) [mass noun] The wood of the cherry tree.
    More example sentences
    • Upstairs, the master bedroom features a maple floor and fitted cherrywood wardrobes, while the remaining three bedrooms also have fitted wardrobes.
    • The cherrywood handle scales are very pleasing to the eye.
    • She gripped the round top of the cherry bedpost that her father had fashioned so carefully.
  • 2.2Used in names of unrelated plants with fruits similar to those of the cherry tree, e.g. cornelian cherry.
    More example sentences
    • In 1922 Japanese cherries were planted in Sparkes Gully but in 1923 it was decided that all future plantings should be indigenous to South Australia.
    • Where resistance to oak root fungus is needed, try bush anemone, Catalina cherry, or spice bush.
  • 3 [mass noun] A bright deep red colour: [as modifier]: her mouth was a bright cherry red she pulled up the collar of her cherry wool coat
    More example sentences
    • When purchasing red meat the flesh should be firm, cherry red in colour and finely grained.
    • She had a movie-star smile completed with cherry red lips and bright alabaster teeth.
    • I yelled, my cheeks taking their cherry red colouring again.
  • 4 (one's cherry) • informal One’s virginity: only 3 per cent of the students lost their cherry at college


a bite at the cherry

British An attempt or opportunity to do something: the team had victory snatched from their grasp, and could well have had their last bite at the cherry
More example sentences
  • Virgin Blue, Australia's second biggest carrier will get a bite at the cherry ahead of Singapore.
  • Yes of course we're going to buy it but a demo gives us a bite at the cherry a few days/weeks or whatever before we grab it off the shelves.
  • If you want the domain you should use every leverage you can to prevent anybody else having a bite at the cherry.

a bowl of cherries

[usually with negative] A very pleasant or enjoyable situation or experience: life isn’t exactly a bowl of cherries
More example sentences
  • My life hasn't been, as Mary Jane would put it, a bowl of cherries.
  • Until that day, life had been a bowl of cherries with few pits.
  • History tells us that life as a rock star is far from a bowl of cherries.

the cherry on the cake (or on top)

A desirable feature perceived as the finishing touch to something that is already very good: the car is faster than a Ferrari, but the cherry on the cake is the price
More example sentences
  • Such gripes, though, are minor, as this is but the cherry on the cake, the cake in question being next year's fifth album proper.
  • Perfect use of lighting, scenography and projections emphasised slick performances by a formidable cast and an evocative musical score was the cherry on the cake.
  • This one was the cherry on the cake for L: he loved it.


Middle English: from Old Northern French cherise, from medieval Latin ceresia, based on Greek kerasos 'cherry tree, cherry'. The final -s was lost because cherise was interpreted as plural (compare with caper2 and pea).

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