Antiques and horribles – Definition & Meaning


Antiques and horribles are two words that are often used together, but their meanings may not be clear to everyone. In this article, we will define and explore the meanings of these two words, their origins, and their associations.


Antiques refer to items that are old, valuable, and often considered to be of historical significance. These items can be anything from furniture, paintings, jewelry, or other decorative objects that have been preserved over time.
Horribles, on the other hand, are items that are considered to be ugly, unattractive, or unpleasant. These items can be anything from old, worn-out clothes, broken furniture, or other items that are no longer useful or desirable.


The word antique comes from the Latin word “antiquus,” which means old or ancient. The word horrible comes from the Latin word “horribilis,” which means terrible or frightful.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, antique is defined as “a relic or object of ancient times, valued for its beauty, rarity, or historical significance.” Horrible is defined as “causing horror or fear; very unpleasant.”


Antiques are often associated with elegance, sophistication, and luxury. They are often found in museums, antique shops, or in the homes of collectors. Horribles, on the other hand, are often associated with clutter, messiness, and chaos. They are often found in junkyards, thrift stores, or in the homes of hoarders.


Synonyms for antiques include vintage, classic, historic, and old-fashioned. Synonyms for horribles include ugly, unpleasant, repulsive, and disgusting.


Antonyms for antiques include modern, new, contemporary, and current. Antonyms for horribles include beautiful, attractive, pleasing, and delightful.

The same root words

The words antique and horrible share the same root word, which is the Latin word “horribilis.” However, they have taken on different meanings over time.

Example Sentences

  • “The antique vase was worth a fortune at the auction.”
  • “The horrible smell coming from the garbage can made me want to gag.”

In conclusion, antiques and horribles are two words that have distinct meanings and associations. While antiques are valued for their historical significance and beauty, horribles are often considered to be unpleasant or unattractive. Understanding the meanings and associations of these words can help us better appreciate the value of antiques and avoid the accumulation of horribles in our homes.

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