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[sen-ter-pees] /ˈsɛn tərˌpis/
an ornamental object used in a central position, especially on the center of a dining-room table.
the central or outstanding point or feature:
The centerpiece of the evening was a play put on by the employees.
Origin of centerpiece
1830-40; center + piece Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for centerpiece
  • In the center is usually a bowl or vase or other centerpiece, of white flowers.
  • The first manifestation of that is when he came out for a corporate tax cut, which is now a centerpiece of his economic platform.
  • Instead, the report's centerpiece is an odd extrapolation of the supply-and-demand theory to college education.
  • But certainly the centerpiece of the show will be this much-anticipated acquisition.
  • It was the centerpiece of an exhibition held there last year that traced affinities between the writer and the sculptor.
  • Its centerpiece is a narrow pool of water punctuated by lotus-shaped fountains.
  • Warheads with yields in the hundreds of kilotons make fusion the centerpiece of the explosion.
  • Any one shot from this would have been the centerpiece effect of a movie ten years ago.
  • Champagne flutes and evergreen sprigs form a centerpiece when interspersed with forest green tea lights in clear votive holders.
  • Brighten up an outdoor table by taking the centerpiece to a new level.
Word Origin and History for centerpiece

also center-piece, 1800, from center + piece (n.). Figurative sense is recorded from 1937.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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