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A small container made of horn or a similar material, formerly used to hold ink for writing.
Affectedly or ostentatiously learned; pedantic: inkhorn words.


(Historical Terms) (formerly) a small portable container for ink, usually made from horn



a small container of horn or other material, formerly used to hold writing ink.
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Characterized by a narrow concern for book learning and formal rules, without knowledge or experience of practical matters:
References in classic literature ?
"All right," said Haley, his face beaming with delight; and pulling out an old inkhorn, he proceeded to fill out a bill of sale, which, in a few moments, he handed to the young man.
haberdasher(es ware 'caps, purses, points, beads, spurs, inkhorns, thread, stationery, etc.' MED); Mercand 1198, Marcand 1202, Marchand 1202, 1240, Marchaunt 1219, Merchant 1219, Marchant 1220, 1332, 1247, Markant 1225, Markaunt 1255, Marschaunt 1268, Markaund 1274, 1297, Marschand 1275, Markand 1327, Merchaunt 1332 (marchaunt [OF marcheant, -eand, markeant, mercheant & AF marchaunt, merchaunt] 'a wholesale businessman; a factor, broker; a peddler, retailer; a shopkeeper' MED; merchant (a.
The epic-religious-journalistic parody that erupts from Martin Cunningham's barroom blessing starts as an endless parade of saints performing miracles and bearing palms, inkhorns, and babes in bathtubs, but collapses finally into a blessing that, translated, shows no real parodic elements: