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Related to repoussé: Repoussé and chasing
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pattern on a sterling silver knife handle


1. Shaped or decorated with patterns in relief formed by hammering and pressing on the reverse side. Used especially of metal.
2. Raised in relief.
1. A design in relief.
2. The technique of hammering and pressing designs in relief.

[French, past participle of repousser, to push back, from Old French : re-, re- + pousser, to push (from Latin pulsāre, to beat, frequentative of pellere, to push; see repel).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. (Art Terms) raised in relief, as a design on a thin piece of metal hammered through from the underside
2. (Art Terms) decorated with such designs
3. (Art Terms) a design or surface made in this way
4. (Art Terms) the technique of hammering designs in this way
[C19: from French, from repousser to push back, from re- + pousser to push]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(rə puˈseɪ)

1. (of a design) raised in relief by hammering on the reverse side.
2. ornamented or made in this kind of raised work.
3. the art or process of producing repoussé designs.
[1850–55; < French, past participle of repousser to push back; see re-, push]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


Decorative art worked in metal with the design hammered into relief from the reverse side.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited