Definition of faience in English:


Pronunciation /fʌɪˈɑːns//fʌɪˈɑːɒ̃s/


mass noun
  • 1Glazed ceramic ware, in particular decorated tin-glazed earthenware of the type which includes delftware and maiolica.

    as modifier ‘faience figurines’
    • ‘The turquoise colour of British faience results from using a copper-based colourant for the glaze.’
    • ‘An assortment of vases and faience was displayed on a built-in shelf that circled the rotunda.’
    • ‘Given the scarcity of examples of bird painting on Niderviller faience or porcelain, it is impossible to say what Gerverot's birds may have looked like.’
    • ‘Now she finds her eye drawn to French faience, a type of glazed earthenware.’
    • ‘Tin-glazed earthenware, or faience, was introduced in the early sixteenth century in imitation of Chinese porcelain to France, Germany and the Netherlands, and by mid-century it had arrived in England.’
    1. 1.1Architecture Moulded glazed or unglazed terracotta blocks used structurally or as cladding.
      • ‘A programme of refurbishment at Pullman Court includes work on original features such as the pink faience tiling that emphasises many planes of the blocks and research into the interior colour scheme.’
      • ‘Artificially squared tesserae (Greek abakiskoi: small slabs) of stone, terracotta, faience, and glass appear to be developments of the 3rd century bc.’
      • ‘This passage specifies the functions of these mummiform statuettes, made of wood, terracotta, faience or metal, and in some cases left in the tomb in their hundreds.’


Late 17th century (originally denoting pottery made at Faenza): from French faïence, from Faïence, the French name for Faenza.