graffiti

verb
graf·​fi·​ti | \ grə-ˈfē-(ˌ)tē How to pronounce graffiti (audio) , gra-, grä-\
graffitied; graffitiing\ grə-​ˈfē-​(ˌ)tē-​iŋ How to pronounce graffitiing (audio) , gra-​ , grä-​ \ also graffiting\ grə-​ˈfē-​tiŋ How to pronounce graffiting (audio) , gra-​ , grä-​ \

Definition of graffiti

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to draw graffiti on : to deface with graffiti graffitied walls

graffiti

noun

Definition of graffiti (Entry 2 of 2)

: usually unauthorized writing or drawing on a public surface

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Is graffiti singular or plural?: Usage Guide

Noun

Graffiti, which also serves as the plural of graffito, is commonly used as a singular mass noun. graffiti … was depressing people who rode the subways New Yorker graffiti comes in various styles — S. K. Oberbeck This use is well established although not yet as well established as the mass-noun use of data. Use of graffiti as a singular count noun is still quite rare and is not standard.

Examples of graffiti in a Sentence

Noun

The walls of the old building are covered with graffiti.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

For this show, a mirrored floor and graffitied ceiling thrilled and disoriented, and the pulsing impulses of each piece as well as the distance traveled from the first to the last gave me both a visceral and intellectual jolt. Jordan Roth, Vogue, "Jordan Roth: A Man’s View on the Haute Couture," 28 Jan. 2019 Since then, poor twelve-foot bronze Harry has been guillotined, graffitied, painted, bombed, and toppled, according to the current anti-American gripe of the day. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "The Cowardly Incoherence of Name-Changing, Statue-Toppling, and other Iconoclasms," 25 June 2019 Students graffiti the walls, cheat on homework, and text too much in class. Chaim Gartenberg, The Verge, "Magic for Liars blends magic school with a murder mystery," 15 June 2019 Vandals used pink and white spray paint to graffiti a string of vehicles, buildings and businesses over the weekend, according to the Boise Police Department. Christina Lords, idahostatesman, "Vandals cause thousands in damage by spray painting businesses, vehicles in Boise | Idaho Statesman," 2 Apr. 2018 But rather than go the traditional route of weighty heritage and spectacular yet static stones, the house has placed its mascot, Wladimir the cat, center stage (in a dedicated app, Vendorama) and tapped the artist Noé to graffiti the entryway. Vogue, "Vendorama: Boucheron’s Anniversary Ode to the Place It Calls Home," 11 Jan. 2018 Mark MacKinnon | The Globe and Mail | Dec 2, 2016 | 63 minutes (15,996 words) MacKinnon tells the story of Naief Abazid, who graffitied a school wall on a lark at age 14. Longreads, "Longreads Best of 2017: All of Our No. 1 Story Picks," 10 May 2017 The Montreal resident, who runs a power-washing business, is the founder of an initiative called Erasing Hate, where he is often called upon to remove hate symbols that have been graffitied onto public property, according to the CBC. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Canadian Town’s Swastika-Adorned Anchor Causes Anger and Confusion," 25 Aug. 2017 Police began investigating after a church parishioner reported finding the door kicked in and graffiti on three buildings. Dan Corey, NBC News, "Air Force Members Painted Satanic Symbols on Historic Church, Police Say," 13 Oct. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

She was told to cover graffiti on the bridge’s walls. oregonlive.com, "Art project on I-205 pedestrian bridge caught in bureaucratic limbo is spared ‘restoration’," 10 July 2019 Hours before — and just a few blocks away from the event — vandals painted graffiti on The Bean and elsewhere. Lisa Donovan, chicagotribune.com, "The Spin: Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg tells Rainbow/PUSH audience that racial inequality, left unaddressed, ‘will upend the American project'," 1 July 2019 Markets don’t sell cigarettes or alcohol, there is no graffiti marking the walls. Brittny Mejia, latimes.com, "Sex crime case renews tension in Mexico between Catholics and evangelical church," 27 June 2019 Markets don’t sell cigarettes or alcohol, there is no graffiti marking the walls. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Must Reads: Sex crime case renews tension in Mexico between Catholics and evangelical church," 27 June 2019 There is also graffiti in the Spanish Diner by Mikel Urmeneta, a Basque artist with a rich universe of characters that are like pets that populate space. Vanessa Lawrence, ELLE Decor, "A Mecca of Spanish Design and Food Opens in New York," 3 Apr. 2019 Those blocks now sit on the beach, coated in graffiti. Devin Kelly, Anchorage Daily News, "Point Woronzof shrinking an average of 2 feet each year, UAA researchers and students find," 12 June 2019 Under a splattering of graffiti, Spanish abuelas sweep their stoops as the sun peeks over wrought iron balconies. Elizabeth Wellington, Vogue, "Where to Eat and Shop in Malasaña, the Williamsburg of Madrid," 22 July 2018 The side that once faced East Berlin is mostly devoid of graffiti. Karen Huppertz, ajc, "Berlin Wall display will remain in Suwanee," 7 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'graffiti.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of graffiti

Verb

1964, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1945, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for graffiti

Noun and Verb

Italian, plural of graffito

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Learn More about graffiti

Dictionary Entries near graffiti

gradus

gradus ad Parnassum

graff

graffiti

graffito

graft

graftage

Statistics for graffiti

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for graffiti

The first known use of graffiti was in 1945

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More Definitions for graffiti

graffiti

noun

English Language Learners Definition of graffiti

: pictures or words painted or drawn on a wall, building, etc.

graffiti

noun
graf·​fi·​ti | \ grə-ˈfē-tē How to pronounce graffiti (audio) \

Kids Definition of graffiti

: writing or drawing made on a public structure without permission

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More from Merriam-Webster on graffiti

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with graffiti

Spanish Central: Translation of graffiti

Nglish: Translation of graffiti for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of graffiti for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about graffiti

Comments on graffiti

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