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wain·​scot ˈwān-skət How to pronounce wainscot (audio)
-ˌskät How to pronounce wainscot (audio)
British : a fine grade of oak imported for woodwork
: a usually paneled wooden lining of an interior wall
: a lining of an interior wall irrespective of material
: the lower three or four feet (about one meter) of an interior wall when finished differently from the remainder of the wall


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wainscoted or wainscotted; wainscoting or wainscotting

transitive verb

: to line with or as if with boards or paneling

Examples of wainscot in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
The latter not only has this unique terrace access but also touts a large dressing room and an ultra-luxe, spa-like bathroom with Salvatori Italian Bianco Carrara marble and Grigio Versilia slab wainscot, plus a deep soaking tub carved from a single block of marble and carved stone sinks. Emma Reynolds, Robb Report, 15 May 2023 Other ideas at the Crater Lake Lodge to take home: Old Hickory furniture, wainscot and simple wood headboards. oregonlive, 31 Jan. 2023 The fifth floor lobby, ground level at Cactus Street, had mirrors above wainscot. oregonlive, 14 Dec. 2022 The dining room has mahogany wainscot that rises six feet from the hardwood floors. oregonlive, 17 July 2022 The décor is forest green and white wainscot paneling, with alpine modern furnishings, and printed camp blankets and rugs. Everett Potter, Forbes, 5 May 2022 The mildewed rugs, wainscot walls with paper pasted on them to keep out the cold. Jerry Saltz, Vulture, 22 Sep. 2021 In the main-level bathroom, the couple placed an antique dresser mirror over the vanity and installed a beefy top rail on the wainscot. Janna Lufkin, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 June 2021 With a semigloss paint sheen, this board-and-batten wainscot is durable, cleans up easily, and is a nice contrast to the matte finish on the wall above. Pamela Porter, Better Homes & Gardens, 19 May 2021
Like a modern version of wainscoting, blue-gray paint covers the lower half of the hallway walls and doors, lining up with the base of the wall-mount bookshelves. Kit Selzer, Better Homes & Gardens, 24 Apr. 2020 White wainscoting panels carry throughout the guest area. Mary Wakeford, azcentral, 9 Jan. 2020 Past a grey façade of stucco and concrete, the traditional-style home opens to 4,314 square feet of formal living spaces with dark hardwood floors, coffered ceilings and wainscoting. Jack Flemming, Los Angeles Times, 8 Oct. 2019 Replete with exterior walls, a functioning lime-green kitchen, a dining room with a table and a soda siphon, a living room with a fireplace and hardwood floors, wainscoting and whatnot. chicagotribune.com, 11 Oct. 2019

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

Word History



Middle English, from Middle Dutch wagenschot, probably from wagen wagon + schot shot, crossbar

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1570, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of wainscot was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near wainscot

Cite this Entry

“Wainscot.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wainscot. Accessed 24 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a usually paneled wooden lining of the wall of a room
: the lower three or four feet (about one meter) of an interior wall when finished differently from the rest

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