scrimshaw definition by Webster's New World
Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- intricate decoration and carving of bone, ivory, etc., as of whales and walruses, done esp. by sailors on long voyages
- an article so made, or such articles collectively
Origin: earlier also scrimshander ; from uncertain or unknown; perhaps
transitive verb, intransitive verb
to carve (shells, bone, etc.) in making scrimshaw
scrimshaw definition by American Heritage Dictionary
noun pl. scrimshaw or scrim·shaws
- The art of carving or incising intricate designs on whalebone or whale ivory.
- A decorative article made by this art.
To decorate (whale ivory or whalebone) with intricate carvings or designs or make such designs.
Origin: Probably from scrimshander.