[kol-uh-fon, -fuh n]
- a publisher's or printer's distinctive emblem, used as an identifying device on its books and other works.
- an inscription at the end of a book or manuscript, used especially in the 15th and 16th centuries, giving the title or subject of the work, its author, the name of the printer or publisher, and the date and place of publication.
Origin of colophon
1615–25; < Latin < Greek kolophṓn summit, finishing touch
- an ancient city in Asia Minor: one of the 12 Ionian cities banded together in the 8th century b.c.: largely depopulated in 286 b.c.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for colophon
Prophets and prophetesses fasted at Miletus, Colophon, and other places.The Legacy of Greece
She was a nymph once, they say—the daughter of Idmon the dyer, of Colophon, a city of Lydia.A Book of Myths
Must I be torn from hence and thrown With frontispiece and colophon!The Library
The colophon is a real masterpiece and a witty criticism of the play as well.Salom
Dionysios of Colophon and Pauson have already been spoken of.History of Ancient Art
Franz von Reber
- a publisher's emblem on a book
- (formerly) an inscription at the end of a book showing the title, printer, date, etc
C17: via Late Latin, from Greek kolophōn a finishing stroke
Word Origin and History for colophon
1774, "publisher's inscription at the end of a book," from Latin colophon, from Greek kolophon "summit, final touch" (see hill).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper