- the act or process of making designs or pictures on a metal plate, glass, etc., by the corrosive action of an acid instead of by a burin.
- an impression, as on paper, taken from an etched plate.
- the design so produced.
- a metal plate bearing such a design.
Origin of etching
- to cut, bite, or corrode with an acid or the like; engrave with an acid or the like, as to form a design in furrows that when charged with ink will give an impression on paper.
- to produce (a design, image, etc.) by this method, as on copper or glass.
- to outline clearly or sharply; delineate, as a person's features or character.
- to fix permanently in or implant firmly on the mind; root in the memory: Our last conversation is etched in my memory.
- Geology. to cut (a feature) into the surface of the earth by means of erosion: A deep canyon was etched into the land by the river's rushing waters.
- to practice the art of etching.
- Printing. an acid used for etching.
Origin of etch
Related Words for etchingengraving, inscription, reproduction, impression, imprint, print, transferring, mezzotint, photoengraving, rotogravure, photogravure
Examples from the Web for etching
Contemporary Examples of etching
He had customized his new gun by etching in the words “better off this way” and “my ELF weapon.”Inside the Washington Navy Yard’s Building 197 During Alexis’s Rampage
September 19, 2013
Celluloid is to Dean what oil paint is to Titian or etching to Whistler.Tacita Dean: One of Today’s 10 Most Important Artists
June 5, 2011
The Pablo Picasso etching had stalled at a bid of $5,400, barely above its low estimate.Bernie's Fire Sale
May 23, 2009
That day, I walked by the Vietnam Memorial and people were etching names on to front pages of newspapers.Let's Not Have a Ball
December 9, 2008
Historical Examples of etching
To his request I consented, made an etching of it, and it was published.Bygone Punishments
His most finished and striking landscape is perhaps the etching of the "Three Trees."Rembrandt and His Works
Tall 16mo, handsome cover design, etching frontispiece, $1.00.
Handsomely illustrated with a series of portraits in etching and photogravure.
In truth, there are no secrets to this artist's technique in the etching medium.Rembrandt's Etching Technique: An Example
- the art, act, or process of preparing etched surfaces or of printing designs from them
- an etched plate
- an impression made from an etched plate
- (tr) to wear away the surface of (a metal, glass, etc) by chemical action, esp the action of an acid
- to cut or corrode (a design, decoration, etc) on (a metal or other plate to be used for printing) by using the action of acid on parts not covered by wax or other acid-resistant coating
- (tr) to cut with or as if with a sharp implementhe etched his name on the table
- (tr; usually passive) to imprint vividlythe event was etched on her memory
Word Origin for etch
1630s, action of the verb etch, also "the art of engraving;" 1760s as "a print, etc., made from an etched plate."
1630s, "to engrave by eating away the surface of with acids," from Dutch etsen, from German ätzen "to etch," from Old High German azzon "cause to bite, feed," from Proto-Germanic *atjanan, causative of *etanan "eat" (see eat). Related: Etched; etching.
An artistic print made from a plate on which the artist has etched a design with acid. (Compare engraving.)