Main definitions of sconce in English

: sconce1sconce2

sconce1

noun

  • 1A candle holder that is attached to a wall with an ornamental bracket.

    ‘a wall sconce’
    • ‘The sconces on the walls varied - they were both on display and currently in use.’
    • ‘The bronze sconces that lined the walls gleamed, furnished with fresh candles, and the side-tables beneath them smelled pleasingly of beeswax.’
    • ‘In the wide corridor, the candles guttered in the sconces on the wall.’
    • ‘Only if you're installing wall sconces, or recessed overhead lights, will you need to do electrical work in a room to change the lighting.’
    • ‘The door was in a darker part of the corridor that led down to their rooms on the upper floor and Edmund took a candle from one of the wall sconces, lighting it and holding it steady by the ornate lock plate.’
    • ‘Sound is presented in a simple Dolby Digital 2.0 mix and will not rattle sconces from your walls or make the neighbors head for the hills.’
    • ‘She held her sword firmly in her hand, the elven blade gleaming in the firelight the radiated off of the torches that were in the sconces along the wall.’
    • ‘Fakes are currently thought to be made in Spain and Italy, and include copies of wall sconces, alms dishes, ladles, candle moulds and other popular and valuable forms.’
    • ‘Oil lamps burned in sconces along the walls, lighting the companions' way.’
    • ‘No corner of the room had been neglected - even the wooden torches burning in the wall sconces had been carved with intricate flowers and leaves.’
    • ‘Thread the fabric through the wreath and let it fall lightly across each lighting sconce.’
    • ‘This show lounge has such Art Deco-style touches as stylized, elongated female figures on the curtain, typical wall sconces, and skyscrapers in a sunburst pattern on the ceiling.’
    • ‘Pillar candles in wall sconces faintly illuminate the small dining room, which is dark by day and night.’
    • ‘There was a small bookshelf against one wall and some lovely wall sconces.’
    • ‘She deftly detached a lantern off a nearby sconce on the wall.’
    • ‘They resemble cone-like wall sconces, and the colorful abstract shapes covering their surfaces appear to glow like stained glass windows.’
    • ‘Or wall sconces, but that would, again, involve hiring an electrician to install them.’
    • ‘Black candles flickered in sconces on the walls and by the trencher.’
    • ‘The Revivalist home styles of the 1920s brought a craze for wall sconces - another gaslight derivative - but the fashion had largely died out by the end of that decade.’
    • ‘From $3 water glasses to $1,200 ice buckets and designer sconces set into the walls, the folks like the stuff so much that they just had to take it home with them.’
    1. 1.1A flaming torch or candle secured in a sconce.
      ‘the sconces burning in the passage provided some light’
      • ‘Also, the carefully placed wall sconces shed enough light - in two directions, no less - to break up the darkness of the wall color.’
      • ‘I had decided to take no candle and, instead, rely on memory and the dimly lit wall sconces to make my way to the front door.’
      • ‘It was dark, save for the sconces that lined the walls, but many of those had burned out, giving even further evidence that the wee hours of the morning were nigh.’
      • ‘Ornate sconces lined the walls, bringing the hall into flickering illumination.’
      • ‘My house on Whidbey Island, Washington, is almost exclusively lighted by wall sconces.’
      • ‘When they reached the spot beyond the visible candlelight from the entry, wall sconces lit as they reached them.’
      • ‘From the flickering, uncertain light of the wall sconce, she could only see that he was tall and dark-haired, dressed in dusty but well-made traveling clothes.’
      • ‘I found myself in a long, empty hallway lit by a warm orangey glow from the sconces along the walls.’
      • ‘The two of them found themselves in a cavernous hall, dimly lit by wall sconces that emitted a flickering orange glow.’

Origin

Late Middle English (originally denoting a portable lantern with a screen to protect the flame): shortening of Old French esconse lantern, or from medieval Latin sconsa, from Latin absconsa (laterna) dark (lantern) (i.e. a lantern with a device for concealing the light), from abscondere to hide.

Pronunciation:

sconce

/skɒns/

Main definitions of sconce in English

: sconce1sconce2

sconce2

noun

Archaic
  • 1A small fort or earthwork defending a ford, pass, or castle gate.

    1. 1.1A shelter or screen from fire or the weather.

Origin

Late Middle English: from Dutch schans brushwood, from Middle High German schanze. The earliest recorded sense ‘screen, interior partition’ derives perhaps from sconce; the later senses date from the late 16th century.

Pronunciation:

sconce

/skɒns/