sconce

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English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

A modern style of sconce.
An older style of sconce.

From Middle English sconce, skonce, sconse, from Old French esconce (lantern), from Latin absconsus (hidden), perfect passive participle of abscondō (hide).[1][2] Cognate with abscond.

Noun[edit]

sconce (plural sconces)

  1. A light fixture.
    • (Can we date this quote by Evelyn and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      [] tapers put into lanterns or sconces of several-coloured, oiled paper, that the wind might not annoy them.
    • 1847, John Dryden, The Works of John Dryden in Verse and Prose, volume 1, Harper, The Beginning of the Second Book of Lucretius, line 28, page 183:
      Golden sconces hang not on the walls.
  2. A head or a skull.
    • c. 1599-1602, William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act V, scene 1:
      Why does he suffer this rude knave now, to knock him about the sconce with a dirty shovel, and will not tell him of his action of battery?
    • 1818, John Keats, On Some Skulls in Beauly Abbey, near Inverness:
      Long time this sconce a helmet wore,
      But sickness smites the conscience sore;
      He broke his sword, and hither bore
      His gear and plunder,
      Took to the cowl,—then rav’d and swore
      At his damn’d blunder!
  3. A poll tax; a mulct or fine.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Johnson to this entry?)
  4. A piece of armor for the head; headpiece; helmet.
Related terms[edit]
Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

sconce (third-person singular simple present sconces, present participle sconcing, simple past and past participle sconced)

  1. (obsolete) to impose a fine, a forfeit, or a mulct.
    (The addition of quotations indicative of this usage is being sought):

Etymology 2[edit]

Borrowed from Middle Dutch schans, cognate with German Schanze.[2]

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

sconce (plural sconces)

  1. A type of small fort or other fortification, especially as built to defend a pass or ford.
  2. (obsolete) A hut for protection and shelter; a stall.
    • (Can we date this quote by Beaumont and Fletcher and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      one that [] must raise a sconce by the highway and sell switches
  3. The circular tube, with a brim, in a candlestick, into which the candle is inserted.
  4. (architecture) A squinch.
  5. A fragment of a floe of ice.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Kane to this entry?)
  6. A fixed seat or shelf.
Derived terms[edit]

Verb[edit]

sconce (third-person singular simple present sconces, present participle sconcing, simple past and past participle sconced)

  1. (obsolete) to shut within a sconce; to imprison.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition
  2. 2.0 2.1 ensconce The Lexiteria & alphaDictionary

Further reading[edit]