[stip-uh l]

verb (used with object), stip·pled, stip·pling.

to paint, engrave, or draw by means of dots or small touches.

noun Also stip·pling.

the method of painting, engraving, etc., by stippling.
stippled work; a painting, engraving, or the like, executed by means of dots or small spots.

Origin of stipple

1660–70; < Dutch stippelen, frequentative of stippen to dot, derivative of stip dot
Related formsstip·pler, nounun·stip·pled, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for stipple

draw, dab, paint, engrave, carve, dot

Examples from the Web for stipple

Historical Examples of stipple

  • The student will notice in particular the stipple effect in the reproduction.

    Crayon Portraiture

    Jerome A. Barhydt

  • The stipple manner of engraving was a curious development of the art.

  • She wanted to know the difference between a mezzotint and a stipple print.

    One Man in His Time

    Ellen Glasgow

  • This shows the stipple effect in the face and drapery, and a broken line effect in the background.

    Crayon Portraiture

    Jerome A. Barhydt

  • The foregoing illustration is the first or ground work for the stipple effect produced by the aid of the fingers.

    Crayon Portraiture

    Jerome A. Barhydt

British Dictionary definitions for stipple


verb (tr)

to draw, engrave, or paint using dots or flecks
to apply paint, powder, etc, to (something) with many light dabs
to give (wet paint, cement, etc) a granular effect

noun Also: stippling

the technique of stippling or a picture produced by or using stippling
Derived Formsstippler, noun

Word Origin for stipple

C18: from Dutch stippelen, from stippen to prick, from stip point
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 stipple

1670s, from Dutch stippelen "to make points," frequentative of stippen "to prick, speckle," from stip "a point," probably ultimately from PIE root *st(e)ig- "pointed" (see stick (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper