Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

xylography

play
noun xy·log·ra·phy \zī-ˈlä-grə-fē\

Definition of xylography

  1. :  the art of making engravings on wood especially for printing

xylograph play \ˈzī-lə-ˌgraf\ noun
xylographer play \zī-ˈlä-grə-fər\ noun
xylographic play \ˌzī-lə-ˈgra-fik\ also xylographical play \-fi-kəl\ adjective


Did You Know?

Xylography didn't appear in print in English until 1816, but it is linked to printing practices that are much older. In fact, the oldest known printed works (from Japan and China in the 8th and 9th centuries) were made by xylography, a printing technique that involves carving text in relief upon a wooden block, which is then inked and applied to paper. This method of wood-block printing appeared in Europe in the 14th century, and eventually inspired Johannes Gutenberg to create individual and reusable pieces of type out of metal. These days, xylography can also describe the technique of engraving wood for purely artistic purposes. English speakers picked up the word from French, where it was formed as a combination of xyl-, meaning "wood," and -graphie, which denotes writing in a specified manner.

Origin of xylography

French xylographie, from xyl- + -graphie -graphy


First Known Use: 1816


Learn More about xylography


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up xylography? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to eat gluttonously or ravenously

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

angry prompt maudlin oily
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ