Definition of prestige in English:
- He said that quality consistency guaranteed additional prestige for Bulgaria.
- You will increase your influence and prestige through contact with politicians.
- If you desire and are willing to work for it, you can achieve enormous success, prestige, and fame.
- Burglars also discovered prestige cars fetched a better price than televisions, videos or hi-fis.
- He would take orders for luxury SUVs and top of the line prestige cars from them and have them stolen in Miami.
- Power delivery apart, these two modestly sized prestige cars have a great deal in common.
mid 17th century (in the sense 'illusion, conjuring trick'): from French, literally 'illusion, glamour', from late Latin praestigium 'illusion', from Latin praestigiae (plural) 'conjuring tricks'. The transference of meaning occurred by way of the sense 'dazzling influence, glamour', at first depreciatory.
The 2006 film The Prestige was about a rivalry between two stage magicians in Edwardian London, reviving an early meaning of the word, ‘an illusion or conjuring trick’. Prestige came into English in the mid 17th century, borrowed from a French word meaning ‘illusion, glamour’ which came from Latin praestigium ‘illusion’. The modern meaning, ‘widespread respect and admiration’, developed by way of the sense ‘dazzling influence, glamour’. The idea is that the glamour of a person's past achievements can blind people to any possible faults they might have. The related adjective prestigious is an older word which originally described the skilful use of your hands when performing conjuring tricks. It only came to mean ‘inspiring admiration’ in the early 20th century. Magicians often say hey presto! to announce the climax of a trick. Presto is borrowed from Italian, in which it means ‘quick or quickly’, and comes ultimately from Latin praestus, ‘ready’. Presto, be gone seems to have been a common feature of the patter of 17th-century conjurors and jugglers, and hey presto became popular in the following century. See also abracadabra
- Example sentences
- You can imagine what a shock it was for me to receive a letter informing me that the Association was planning to give me a prestigeful award.
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