from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Plasterwork in imitation of ornamental marble, consisting of ground gypsum and glue colored with marble or granite dust.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In architecture, an Italian process for imitating stone, used for enriching columns and internal walls of buildings.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun An imitation of any veined and ornamental stone, as marble, formed by a substratum of finely ground gypsum mixed with glue, the surface of which, while soft, is variegated with splinters of marble, spar, granite, etc., and subsequently colored and polished.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Plasterwork imitating marble, granite, etc..


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Italian, diminutive of scaglia, chip, of Germanic origin; see skel- in Indo-European roots.]


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word scagliola.


  • Richly detailed Rotunda Lobby, including restoration of the "scagliola" faux marble wainscot and recreation of the long-lost mural over the entrance doors

    Gothamist 2009

  • For the banisters and balustrades, Garnier gave full vent to his love of rare stone in combination—pink granite, pink marble, onyx, scagliola and superb mosaic designs on the floors.

    Architecture as Allegory Barrymore Laurence Scherer 2011

  • Having discovered a transcendental route between the beautiful and the grotesque, this “Militant Ornamentalist” is self-taught in the ancient method of Italian scagliola.

    Adam Wallacavage « DESIGNPHILADELPHIA 2008

  • And Mrs. Browning laughed too, as Flush flung himself down on the bedroom floor and slept soundly upon the arms of the Guidi family inlaid in scagliola.

    Flush: a biography 2004

  • For the morning sun fell aslant on the great glass globe with gold fish in it, which stood on a scagliola pillar in front of the ready-spread bachelor breakfast-table, and by the side of this breakfast-table was a group which would have made any room enticing.

    Adam Bede 2004

  • A flight of veined marble steps leads to the vestibule, with a floor of scagliola, and twelve large Ionic columns and sixteen pilasters of _verde antique_.

    The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 14, No. 389, September 12, 1829 Various

  • The interior red scagliola columns of the vestibule are in pairs, with white bases and capitals, the latter combining the lotus-leaf with the volute.

    Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 22, August, 1878 Various

  • The scagliola decorations in the chapel were by an Englishman, Father +Hugford+, who excelled in various branches of natural philosophy, and in the art of imitating marble by that composition called scagliola.

    The South of France—East Half C. B. Black

  • _Club Room_, which occupies all the ground floor: it will be divided by columns and pilasters of scagliola, and decorated with a paneled ceiling and appropriate ornaments.

    The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 19, No. 531, January 28, 1832 Various

  • It is above thirty feet high, and fifty-seven feet and a half long; and on each side it has wings or recesses, behind insulated columns of scagliola, in imitation of Egyptian granite.

    The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 19, No. 531, January 28, 1832 Various


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • plasterwork resembling ornamental marble

    June 14, 2009

  • This word was chosen as Wordnik word of the day.

    November 11, 2009