Latin sumptuarius, from sumptus (expense, cost), from sumere, sumptum (to take, use, spend); sub (under) + emere (to take, buy): compare with French somptuaire.


  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈsʌm(p)tjuˌɛɹi/, /ˈsʌm(p)t͡ʃuˌɛɹi/
  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈsʌm(p)tjʊəɹi/, /ˈsʌm(p)t͡ʃʊəɹi/, /ˈsʌm(p)t͡ʃəɹi/
    • (file)


sumptuary (comparative more sumptuary, superlative most sumptuary)

  1. Relating to expense; regulating expense or expenditure.
  2. (of a law, regulation, etc.) Intended to restrain or limit the expenditure of citizens in apparel, food, furniture, etc.; to regulate the prices of commodities and the wages of labor; or to forbid or restrict the use of certain articles, such as of luxurious apparel.
    • 1831, Letitia Elizabeth Landon, Romance and Reality, volume 1, page 123:
      Out upon the folly of modern liberty, which has abolished sumptuary laws, and left us to all the horrors of our own inventions! Liberty of conscience is bad enough—the liberty of the press is still worse—but worst of all is liberty of taste in dress to common people.

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