or tes·se·lat·ed



of, relating to, or like a mosaic.
arranged in or having the appearance of a mosaic; checkered.

Origin of tessellated

First recorded in 1685–95; tessellate + -ed2
Related formsun·tes·sel·lat·ed, adjective


[verb tes-uh-leyt; adjective tes-uh-lit, -leyt]

verb (used with object), tes·sel·lat·ed, tes·sel·lat·ing.

to form of small squares or blocks, as floors or pavements; form or arrange in a checkered or mosaic pattern.


Origin of tessellate

1785–95; < Latin tessellātus mosaic, equivalent to tessell(a) small square stone (diminutive of tessera tessera) + -ātus -ate1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for tessellated

decorate, trim, veneer, inset

Examples from the Web for tessellated

Contemporary Examples of tessellated

Historical Examples of tessellated

  • The patio itself is paved with painted bricks—a tessellated pavement.

    The White Chief

    Mayne Reid

  • The ceiling and walls were rich with tessellated and arabesque work.

    The Pirate City

    R.M. Ballantyne

  • He passed on, measuring the tessellated court with a backward sweep of the eye.

  • The sidewalks were laid in tessellated work of all the hues of the solar spectrum.

    A. D. 2000

    Alvarado M. Fuller

  • The floors of the aisles, choir, and chancel are inlaid with tessellated tiles.

    The Church Index

    William Pepperell

British Dictionary definitions for tessellated



(tr) to construct, pave, or inlay with a mosaic of small tiles
(intr) (of identical shapes) to fit together exactlytriangles will tessellate but octagons will not

Word Origin for tessellate

C18: from Latin tessellātus checked, from tessella small stone cube, from tessera
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 tessellated

1690s, from Late Latin tessellatus "made of small square stones or tiles," from tessella "small square stone or tile," diminutive of tessera "a cube or square of stone or wood," perhaps from Greek tessera, neuter of tesseres, Ionic variant of tessares "four" (see four), in reference to four corners. Related: Tessellate (1826, adj.; 1791, v.; 1909, n.); tessellating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

tessellated in Medicine




Composed of or patterned in small squares.
Related formstes′sel•lation n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.