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90s Slang You Should Know


[hee-lee-uh-graf, -grahf] /ˈhi li əˌgræf, -ˌgrɑf/
a device for signaling by means of a movable mirror that reflects beams of light, especially sunlight, to a distance.
Astronomy. photoheliograph.
Meteorology. an instrument for recording the duration and intensity of sunshine.
Photography, Printing. an early type of photoengraving made on a metal plate coated with sensitized asphalt.
verb (used with or without object)
to communicate by heliograph.
Origin of heliograph
First recorded in 1815-25; helio- + -graph
Related forms
[hee-lee-og-ruh-fer] /ˌhi liˈɒg rə fər/ (Show IPA),
[hee-lee-uh-graf-ik] /ˌhi li əˈgræf ɪk/ (Show IPA),
heliographical, adjective
heliographically, adverb
heliography, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for heliograph
Historical Examples
  • The thing was a heliograph making talk, as it supposed, to the preacher, and Jim watched harder than ever.

    Curly Roger Pocock
  • He had also been corroborated by a man who had seen the man who took it down from the heliograph.

    A Yeoman's Letters P. T. Ross
  • With a turn of the heliograph, a mere turn of the wrist, a message is easily flashed twenty miles to the observer.

    The Hills and the Vale Richard Jefferies
  • Instantly, the ship shone like the polished mirror of a heliograph.

    Islands of Space John W Campbell
  • “He said you understood—Britt did,” clamored MacLeod, hastening around in front of the heliograph.

  • If there is no sun I cannot heliograph and I have a host of signals to look up and get ready.

    The Pillar of Light Louis Tracy
  • And the glass of water she lifted pierced like a heliograph into the room.

    The Tower of Oblivion Oliver Onions
  • To this shot the heliograph flashed a cordial expression of approval.

    The Siege of Mafeking (1900) J. Angus Hamilton.
  • Then the heliograph in the zeriba began to talk in flashes of light that opened and shut capriciously.

    The River War Winston S. Churchill
  • Far across the plains I saw a flashing light, as of a heliograph.

    Neighbours Robert Stead
British Dictionary definitions for heliograph


/ˈhiːlɪəʊˌɡrɑːf; -ˌɡræf/
an instrument with mirrors and a shutter used for sending messages in Morse code by reflecting the sun's rays
a device used to photograph the sun
Derived Forms
heliographer (ˌhiːlɪˈɒɡrəfə) noun
heliographic (ˌhiːlɪəʊˈɡræfɪk), heliographical, adjective
heliography, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for heliograph

product of a certain type of engraving process, 1853, from helio- + -graph "something written." Earlier, "a description of the sun" (1706, implied in heliographic). Heliography (1845 in the engraving sense) also (1840) was an early term for what came to be called photography.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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