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engraving


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Term Type

Art & Architecture Thesaurus

Preferred Term

engraving

Details

The intaglio process in which the design is incised into a printing plate, usually a flat copper plate, with the aid of a graver or burin that is held in the palm of the hand and pushed against the copper to cut lines comprising V-shaped grooves. The plate is then inked up, wiped so that ink is retained in the grooves and then forced out under the pressure of the printing process to create lines on the paper. The technique was first developed in the early 15th century in Germany, probably by goldsmiths who wished to keep records of the designs they had engraved on their wares. The process is distinct from "wood engraving (process)," which is a process for relief printing; "wood cut (process)" refers to engraving wood blocks for printing. Historically, "engraving" has sometimes been used incorrectly to refer to all printmaking processes, particulalry any process employing printing plates. For the single step of incising an inscription or design into any surface, not only a printing plate, see "engraving (incising)."

Variations

chalcography

engraving (printing process)

Narrower Terms

mezzotint

drypoint

line engraving

steel engraving

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