One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(of metalwork) hammered into relief from the reverse side.‘a charming sterling silver bowl with repoussé motifs’
- ‘The techniques involved, including repoussé relief, inlays, enamelling, filigree, engraving, and hatching, are those of exceptionally skilled designer-craftsmen, who held a deservedly important position in society.’
Mid 19th century: French, literally ‘pushed back’, past participle of repousser, from re- (expressing intensive force) + pousser ‘to push’.
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