painted with wax colors fixed with heat, or with any process in which colors are burned in.


a work of art produced by an encaustic process.

Origin of encaustic

1650–60; < Latin encausticus < Greek enkaustikós for burning in. See en-2, caustic
Related formsen·caus·ti·cal·ly, adverb
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Examples from the Web for encaustic

Historical Examples of encaustic

British Dictionary definitions for encaustic



decorated by any process involving burning in colours, esp by inlaying coloured clays and baking or by fusing wax colours to the surface


the process of burning in colours
a product of such a process
Derived Formsencaustically, adverb

Word Origin for encaustic

C17: from Latin encausticus, from Greek enkaustikos, from enkaiein to burn in, from kaiein to burn
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

Word Origin and History for encaustic

c.1600 (n.); 1650s (adj.), from Greek enkaustikos, from enkaiein "to burn in" from en (see en- (2)) + kaiein "to burn" (see caustic).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper