“Aunt Flora’s Florida apartment was decorated in a fussy, florid style that seemed excessive to his minimalist sensibilities.”

As used above, what is the best definition of florid?

Check your answer!

Choice A - Elaborate with lots of extra flourishes - often too many
Choice B - Decorated exclusively with flowers or other floral designs
Choice C - Old-fashioned or outmoded in style or design
Choice D - Extravagant and tastefully decorated


Florid (adjective) – elaborate with lots of extra flourishes—often too many; excessive in decoration and detail; or, flushed or red in color

GRE pro tips:

You probably notice that “florid” sounds like “floral.” In fact, florid comes from the Latin adjective floridus, meaning “blooming” or “flowery.” These days, florid is used more broadly, and often in reference to being flowery or overblown in style, speech, writing, or decoration. So, a politician’s rhetoric or a writer’s style can be florid, and so can, say, the architectural style of a cathedral. To help remember florid, imagine the decorating style of a great aunt (named Flora) who lives in Florida.

Example sentences:

“The candidate posed many questions in her rather florid speech, but she did not propose any clear solutions.”

“Most interesting is the florid style of late Gothic architecture.”