noun in·scrip·tion \ in-ˈskrip-shən \
Updated on: 28 Jan 2018

Definition of inscription

1 a : something that is inscribed; also : superscription
b : epigraph 2
c : the wording on a coin, medal, seal, or currency note
2 : the dedication of a book or work of art
3 a : the act of inscribing
b : the entering of a name on or as if on a list : enrollment
4 British
a : the act of inscribing securities
b inscriptions plural : inscribed securities


play \in-ˈskrip-shnəl, -shə-nᵊl\ adjective

Examples of inscription in a Sentence

  1. The painting had an inscription that read, “To my loving wife.”

  2. the inscription on a stone monument

Recent Examples of inscription from the Web

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

Did You Know?

With its prefix in-, meaning "in" or "on", it's not surprising that an inscription is either written on or engraved into a surface. Inscriptions in the ancient world were always chiseled into stone, as inscriptions still may be today. The principal monument of the Vietnam memorial in Washington, D.C., for instance, is a black wall on which are inscribed the names of all the Americans who died during the war—each name in full, row upon seemingly endless row. But an inscription may also be a dedication, such as the words "For my wife" all by themselves on a page near the beginning of a book.

Origin and Etymology of inscription

Middle English inscripcioun, from Latin inscription-, inscriptio, from inscribere

INSCRIPTION Defined for English Language Learners



Definition of inscription for English Language Learners

  • : words that are written on or cut into a surface

INSCRIPTION Defined for Kids


noun in·scrip·tion \ in-ˈskrip-shən \

Definition of inscription for Students

: words or a name inscribed on a surface

Medical Dictionary


noun in·scrip·tion \ in-ˈskrip-shən \

medical Definition of inscription

: the part of a medical prescription that contains the names and quantities of the drugs to be compounded

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