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burnished bronze
  polish and make shiny — especially metal

or more generally:  to improve something — especially the impression that something makes
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burnished burnishing burnish burnisher burnishes
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  • burnished bronze
  • burnish her reputation
  • Yet, in saying this, I do but indirectly burnish a little brighter the noble merit of the poem and the poet.
    Herman Melville  --  Moby Dick
  • His body was like chrysolite, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.
    Daniel 10:6 (NIV)

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  • burnished bronze doors
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  • the old man leaned over the stern and lifted the burnished gold fish with its purple spots over the stem.
    Ernest Hemingway  --  The Old Man and the Sea
  • My brother’s face was swollen and burnished as a new penny.
    Victor Martinez  --  Parrot in the Oven
  • Each letter echoed and reaffirmed my love for Ruth, burnished by our long years together.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  The Longest Ride
  • The first time she’d gone home transparent had been revelatory and had burnished Mae’s faith in humanity.
    Dave Eggers  --  The Circle
  • In fact, the light the sword reflected was dull, burnished, and ages old.
    Patrick Rothfuss  --  The Name of the Wind

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  • She loosened the waist knot of the blouse so that it came open and fell, and then she was wholly naked before the window, coolly burnished, smooth.
    Chang-rae Lee  --  A Gesture Life
  • There were little elegant side tables everywhere, their burnished surfaces covered with ornamental boxes.
    Jojo Moyes  --  Me Before You
  • One was a tall boy of about thirteen, his skin burnished bronze and his cornrows woven like DNA helixes.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Trials of Apollo
  • There was a gleam of rubbed wood and burnished pewter.
    Elizabeth George Speare  --  The Witch of Blackbird Pond
  • Whatever she does or says is burnished with an almost vaudevillian touch.
    Pat Conroy  --  The Water is Wide
  • His back was straight as an alder sapling and his hair shone under the sun like a helmet of burnished metal.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • The lobby was bright, burnished, air-conditioned, the floors a blond wood.
    Dave Eggers  --  A Hologram for the King
  • Though it was never quite night there, or exactly day, still the glow of lamplight against burnished oak gave off an air of conviviality and safety like a private club.
    Donna Tartt  --  The Goldfinch
  • Boyle kept the reins firm in his hand, and his eyes, a burnished gold with hints of green, direct on Iona.
    Nora Roberts  --  Dark Witch
  • Riddle’s burnished gold shield was tucked away in a corner cabinet.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  • Inside, we found the burnished oak casket standing off to one side of the foyer.
    Todd Burpo  --  Heaven Is for Real
  • The commandant was a small, handsome man, so clean-shaven his face seemed burnished.
    Jane Yolen  --  The Devils Arithmetic
  • The hilt was wrapped in silver wire, burnished until it gleamed like starlight.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eragon
  • In April a livelier iris gleamed upon the burnished dove.
    Joseph Heller  --  Catch-22
  • Its beak shone like burnished gold, and its eyes glinted like jet set in yellow stones; its huge white wings were half lifted.
    J.R.R. Tolkien  --  The Fellowship of the Ring
  • I sensed her weakness and spent most of class Coming up with creative ways to burnish my status as class clown.
    Wes Moore  --  The Other Wes Moore
  • The lights from the gas station burnished his sleek black hairdo.
    Homer Hickam  --  October Sky
  • Buckley and Holiday were romping from one large pile of burnished oak leaves to another in an increasingly hyper game of tag.
    Alice Sebold  --  The Lovely Bones
  • Yet, in saying this, I do but indirectly burnish a little brighter the noble merit of the poem and the poet.
    Herman Melville  --  Moby Dick
  • A kitten the color of burnished gold poked its head out of the top of the case.
    Frank Beddor  --  The Looking Glass Wars
  • He liked the burnished black head with its neat waves of hair, and her eyes-cool, impersonal and grey.
    Agatha Christie  --  Murder On The Orient Express
  • Through its window I can see burnished wood and intricate light fixtures.
    Sara Gruen  --  Water for Elephants
  • The burnished disks glimmered in the setting sun as it sifted through the cupola.
    Dan Brown  --  Angels & Demons
  • Several burnished pans, too big to go in the cupboards, hung against them.
    John Wyndham  --  The Chrysalids
  • Beneath it was the long mail shirt, burnished and oiled until the steel gleamed brilliantly.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eldest
  • Below was the valley of the Thames, in which the river lay like a band of burnished steel.
    H.G. Wells  --  The Time Machine
  • The group of trees, with their dark leaves shining like burnished metal in the light of the setting sun, were sufficient to mark the house even had Miss Hunter not been standing smiling on the door-step.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
  • They came to a large burnished silver door, and the silver key opened it.
    Ray Bradbury  --  The Martian Chronicles
  • To me he was unweariedly kind, and always glad to see me in the galley, which he kept as clean as a new pin, the dishes hanging up burnished and his parrot in a cage in one corner.
    Robert Louis Stevenson  --  Treasure Island
  • There was a steel head-piece, a cuirass, a gorget and greaves, with a pair of gauntlets and a sword hanging beneath; all, and especially the helmet and breastplate, so highly burnished as to glow with white radiance, and scatter an illumination everywhere about upon the floor.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • He was burnished, his face shaved so close that its darkness had a shine like polished wood.
    John Steinbeck  --  East of Eden
  • It was very clean and neat: the ornamental windows were hung with little white curtains; the floor was spotless; the grate and fire-irons were burnished bright, and the fire burnt clear.
    Charlotte Bronte  --  Jane Eyre
  • Our dainty little craft was made to look her very best; her decks were scrubbed, her brass guns burnished, all lumber* removed and put ashore, and the flag of England hoisted to her peak.
    Johann Wyss  --  The Swiss Family Robinson
  • Nearby his glinting arms were lying: a round shield, two lances, and a helmet burnished bright.
    Homer  --  The Iliad
  • He said in reply that they spoke the truth in every respect except as to the dagger, for it was not a dagger, nor little, but a burnished poniard sharper than an awl.
    Miguel de Cervantes  --  Don Quixote
  • A big round moon, slowly deepening from her pallid luster into burnished silver, hung over the Haunted Wood; the air was full of sweet summer sounds—sleepy birds twittering, freakish breezes, faraway voices and laughter.
    Lucy Maud Montgomery  --  Anne Of Green Gables
  • I removed the habit, and there shone forth beneath a grand plaid silk frock, white trousers, and burnished shoes; and, while her eyes sparkled joyfully when the dogs came bounding up to welcome her, she dared hardly touch them lest they should fawn upon her splendid garments.
    Emily Bronte  --  Wuthering Heights
  • A jet of coffee steam from the burnished caldron.
    James Joyce  --  Ulysses
  • A lieutenant of carabinieri, pressed, burnished, vital, came into the room like three men and the guards jumped to attention.
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  Tender is the Night
  • Frail, fine-boned, so white of skin that her flaming hair seemed to have drawn all the color from her face into its vital burnished mass, she was nevertheless possessed of exuberant health and untiring energy.
    Margaret Mitchell  --  Gone with the Wind
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Associated words [difficulty]:   burnish [3]
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