American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A thin surface layer, as of finely grained wood, glued to a base of inferior material.
- n. Any of the thin layers glued together to make plywood.
- n. A decorative facing, as of brick.
- n. A deceptive, superficial show; a façade: a veneer of friendliness.
- v. To overlay (a surface) with a thin layer of a fine or decorative material.
- v. To glue together (layers of wood) to make plywood.
- v. To conceal, as something common or crude, with a deceptively attractive outward show.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To overlay or face, as an inferior wood, with wood of a finer or more beautiful kind, so as to give the whole the appearance of being made of the more valuable material; cover with veneers: as, to veneer a wardrobe or other article of furniture.
- To cover with a thin coating of substance similar to the body, in other materials than wood, as in ceramics.
- Hence To impart a more agreeable appearance to, as to something vicious, worthless, or forbidding; disguise with a superficial attraction; gild.
- n. A thin piece of wood of a choice kind laid upon another of a more common sort, so as to give a superior and more valuable appearance to the article so treated, as a piece of furniture. Choice and beautiful kinds of hard woods, as mahogany or rosewood, are used for veneers, the wood to which they are attached by gluing being usually deal or pine. Ivory, mother-of-pearl, and other ornamental substances are sometimes used as veneers for small articles, as cabinets or caskets.
- n. A thin coating covering the body of anything, especially for decorative purposes: used when the material of the outer coating is similar to that of the body, as in ceramics or in paper-manufacturing.
- n. Show; superficial ornament; meretricious disguise.
- n. In entomology, a veneer-moth.
- n. A thin decorative covering of fine wood applied to coarser wood or other material.
- n. An attractive appearance that covers or disguises true nature or feelings.
- v. woodworking To apply veneer.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To overlay or plate with a thin layer of wood or other material for outer finish or decoration. Used also figuratively.
- n. A thin leaf or layer of a more valuable or beautiful material for overlaying an inferior one, especially such a thin leaf of wood to be glued to a cheaper wood; hence, external show; gloss; false pretense.
- n. coating consisting of a thin layer of superior wood glued to a base of inferior wood
- n. an ornamental coating to a building
- v. cover with veneer
- From German Furnier, from furnieren ("to inlay, cover with a veneer"), from French fournir ("to furnish, accomplish"), from Middle French fornir, from Old French fornir, furnir ("to furnish"), from Old Frankish *frumjan ("to provide"), from Proto-Germanic *frumjanan (“to further, promote”). Cognate with Old High German frumjan, frummen ("to accomplish, execute, provide"), Old English fremian ("to promote, perform"). More at furnish. (Wiktionary)
- Alteration of obsolete faneering, from German Furnierung, from furnieren, to furnish, veneer, from French fournir, to furnish, from Old French furnir, of Germanic origin; see per1 in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“They rarely draw the conclusion that the veneer is the most important thing about civilization.”
“But, at the same time," he said, "there were broader currents of discrimination that pushed against what I call the veneer of legal equality.”
“U.S. industry needs a steady supply of engineers and technicians to keep things humming, but the fact is that those who will really make a difference, who will come up with the products, or ideas, or research results that really mean something are a very thin veneer at the top.”
“But that is usually a thin veneer for how completely clueless I really am.”
“Later in her ordeal she has the optimism to keep some chipped veneer from the cellar so she might later help police prove this was the house of the perpetrator.”
“Two doors lay open before him and he passed through, great, bristly shoulders scraping gilt veneer from the posterns.”
“The cloying scent of antiseptic was a thin veneer to the underlying smell of infection and decay.”
“Basically this is a counting and matching game with a very thin veneer of theme .. but hey, if it gets you there, have fun!”
“Sliced into wafer thin veneer, that chunk could easily reap a profit with that piece of wood for the right woodworker (not me).”
“Absolutely not, but if violent racism and homophobia become acceptable topics of reasoned debate then public reason is little more than a thin veneer of manners soon to give way to something much darker.”
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