gilding

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gild1 / gild/ • v. [tr.] cover thinly with gold. ∎  give a specious or false brilliance to: the useless martyrs' deaths of the pilots gilded the operation. PHRASES: gild the lily try to improve what is already beautiful or excellent. DERIVATIVES: gild·er n. gild2 • n. archaic spelling of guild.

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gild •Schwarzwald • Buchenwald •beheld, eld, geld, held, meld, self-propelled, upheld, weld, withheld •Ziegfeld • unparalleled • spot-weld •unscaled •afield, field, midfield, misfield, shield, unaneled, unconcealed, unhealed, unpeeled, unrevealed, unsealed, wield, yield •backfield • battlefield • Mansfield •Garfield • Sheffield • Lee-Enfield •airfield • Wakefield • Masefield •Greenfield • Lichfield • brickfield •Springfield • Smithfield • minefield •cornfield • brownfield • outfield •snowfield •coalfield, goldfield, Sutton Coldfield •oilfield • Bloomfield • Nuffield •upfield • Huddersfield • Sellafield •chesterfield • windshield •gumshield •build, deskilled, gild, guild, self-willed, sild, unfilled, unfulfilled, unskilled, untilled, upbuild •Brunhild • Roskilde

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gild gild the lily embellish excessively, add ornament where none is needed, from an alteration of a quotation from Shakespeare's King John, ‘To gild refinèd gold, to paint the lily’. The conflated expression gild the lily is recorded from the early 20th century.
gild the pill make something unpleasant seem more acceptable (pills were traditionally coated with gilt to make them more attractive).

See also gilded, gilt.

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gild·ing / ˈgilding/ • n. the process of applying gold leaf or gold paint. ∎  the material used in, or the surface produced by, this process.

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gild1 cover with gold. OE. -gyldan (in pp. ġegyld GILT1 and comps.) = ON. gylla :- Gmc. *ʒulþjan, f. *ʒulþam GOLD.

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gild2 see GUILD.