"gloss, radiance, quality of shining by reflecting light," 1520s, from French lustre "gloss, radiance" (14c.), common Romanic (cognates: Spanish and Portuguese lustre, Rumanian lustru, Italian lustro "splendor, brilliancy"), a noun ultimately from Latin lustrare "spread light over, brighten, illumine," which is related to lustrum "purification" (from PIE *leuk-stro-, suffixed form of root *leuk- "light, brightness").
Especially "quality of glossiness or radiance in a textile material or fabric." Figurative meaning "radiant beauty" is from c. 1600; that of "splendor, renown" is from 1550s. Lusterware, also lustre-ware, "stoneware or crockery having surface ornamentations in metallic colors," is attested by 1820.
updated on December 08, 2020