One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Adorn (whalebone, ivory, shells, or other materials) with carved or colored designs.
- ‘Some sea shells, such as abalone, have been scrimshawed and horn, particularly cattle horn, is also scrimshawed.’
- ‘While he was scrimshawing it, he was reminded of a puzzling question which of course I don't know the answer to.’
- ‘It has been scrimshawed and carved by the hand of this talented carver.’
Scrimshawed ivory or shells.
- ‘Pictured below are a several scrimshaw pieces that we have SOLD from our extensive inventory of antique scrimshaw.’
- ‘While collectors do appreciate the potential investment value of scrimshaw, that is not usually their primary reason for acquiring it.’
- ‘History buffs and art lovers will find much to savor including scrimshaw at this noteworthy museum.’
- ‘In their leisure time, though, whalemen often practised the art of scrimshaw, creating unique and beautiful works of art as well as practical and useful tools and implements.’
- ‘Right now I currently do scrimshaw and other artwork.’
- ‘Nonetheless, there were interesting antique collectibles bought, such as scrimshaw you see once and don't see again.’
Early 19th century: of unknown origin; perhaps influenced by the surname Scrimshaw.
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