1. A pad or pillow with a soft filling, used for resting, reclining, or kneeling.
2. Something resilient used as a rest, support, or shock absorber.
3. A mat placed or attached beneath carpeting to provide softness and increase durability.
4. A padlike body part.
5. Games The rim bordering the playing surface of a billiard table.
6. A pillow used in lacemaking.
7. Something that mitigates or relieves an adverse effect: extra funds serving as a cushion against future inflation.
tr.v. cush·ioned, cush·ion·ing, cush·ions
1. To provide with a cushion: cushion a bench.
2. To place or seat on a cushion.
3. To cover or hide (something) with or as if with a cushion.
4. To protect from impacts or other disturbing effects: an automobile suspension that cushions the ride.
5. To mitigate the effects of; absorb the shock of: cushion a blow.
[Middle English cushin, from Old French coussin, from Vulgar Latin *coxīnum, from Latin coxa, hip.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.