• synonyms


  1. painted with wax colors fixed with heat, or with any process in which colors are burned in.
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  1. a work of art produced by an encaustic process.
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Origin of encaustic

1650–60; < Latin encausticus < Greek enkaustikós for burning in. See en-2, caustic
Related formsen·caus·ti·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for encaustic

Historical Examples

  • The floor was composed of encaustic tiles, and had many memorial brasses.

    English Villages

    P. H. Ditchfield

  • Encaustic tiles have sometimes been used for memorials of the departed.

  • Pausias was the first to win fame in encaustic painting, although its technical processes had for some time been known.

    History of Ancient Art

    Franz von Reber

  • The material used is the encaustic painting, which has been revived by M. de Klenze.

  • The art of encaustic painting, after lying dormant for about 15 centuries, was revived by Count Caylus, in 1753.

British Dictionary definitions for encaustic


  1. decorated by any process involving burning in colours, esp by inlaying coloured clays and baking or by fusing wax colours to the surface
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  1. the process of burning in colours
  2. a product of such a process
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Derived Formsencaustically, adverb

Word Origin

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).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper