pantograph

noun

pan·​to·​graph ˈpan-tə-ˌgraf How to pronounce pantograph (audio)
1
: an instrument for copying something (such as a map) on a predetermined scale consisting of four light rigid bars jointed in parallelogram form
also : any of various extensible devices of similar construction (as for use as brackets or gates)
2
: an electrical trolley carried by a collapsible and adjustable frame
pantographic adjective

Illustration of pantograph

Illustration of pantograph
  • pantograph 1

Examples of pantograph in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Read full article Battiston said the pantographs — the metal arms that connect Green Line trolleys to the overhead wire — on both cars of the train were broken. Daniel Kool, BostonGlobe.com, 16 Aug. 2023 The pantograph, attached to the roof of the vehicle, presses against the underside of the lowest overhead wire, the contact wire, according to the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority. Zaeem Shaikh, Dallas News, 2 Aug. 2023 Sagging lines can become entangled in the pantographs that reach up from train cars. IEEE Spectrum, 30 June 2021 Mounted on a four-link, pantograph-style hydraulic mechanism, the oversize center section of the swim platform can cantilever upwards, revealing a tender and toy garage. Howard Walker, Robb Report, 6 May 2022 In one experiment, children were shown a somewhat complex device called a pantograph. Natalie Wexler, Forbes, 3 Jan. 2022 Yet these monumental sculptures come together in a markedly different method than those of Rodin and other sculptors circa 1900, who would start with a clay figure and then duplicate it at larger scale by use of a pantograph. Jason Farago, New York Times, 4 Mar. 2021 The layout and size are fine, but its pantograph keys are really mushy and unresponsive and just don’t feel good to type on. Sam Byford, The Verge, 1 Aug. 2019 Also Friday, Noland talked about a Jan. 14 incident in which an eastbound train's pantograph broke and got tangled in the overhead electrical wires just outside the Dune Park station, creating a shower of sparks and electric arcing atop a train car. Tim Zorn, Post-Tribune, 28 Jan. 2018

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pantograph.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

French pantographe, from pant- + -graphe -graph

First Known Use

1723, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of pantograph was in 1723

Dictionary Entries Near pantograph

Cite this Entry

“Pantograph.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pantograph. Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

pantograph

noun
pan·​to·​graph ˈpant-ə-ˌgraf How to pronounce pantograph (audio)
: an instrument for copying something (as a map) using a previously chosen scale

Medical Definition

pantograph

noun
pan·​to·​graph ˈpant-ə-ˌgraf How to pronounce pantograph (audio)
: an instrument for copying (as from a radiograph) on a predetermined scale consisting of four light rigid bars jointed in parallelogram form

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