Origin of mortiseMiddle English mortays ; from Middle French mortaise, a mortise ; from Arabic murtazza, joined, fixed in
- to join or fasten securely, esp. with a mortise and tenon
- to cut a mortise in
- A usually rectangular cavity in a piece of wood, stone, or other material, prepared to receive a tenon and thus form a joint.
- Printing A hole cut in a plate for insertion of type.
transitive verbmor·tised, mor·tis·ing, mor·tis·es also mor·ticed or mor·tic·ing or mor·tic·es
- To join or fasten securely, as with a mortise and tenon.
- To make a mortise in.
- Printing a. To cut a hole in (a plate) for the insertion of type.b. To cut such a hole and insert (type).
Origin of mortiseMiddle English mortaise, from Old French, perhaps from Arabic murtazz, fastened, from irtazza, to be fixed (in place), derived stem of razza, to fix, insert; see rzz in Semitic roots.
(third-person singular simple present mortises, present participle mortising, simple past and past participle mortised)
- (woodworking) To make a mortise.
- (typography) To adjust the horizontal space between selected pairs of letters; to kern.
First attested circa fourteenth century, from Old French mortaise, of uncertain origin.