Definitions

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

  • adj. Adorned with the figures of humans, animals, or birds, often for narrative purposes. Used especially of initial letters in manuscripts and of the capitals of columns.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. illuminated with decorative designs that represent parts of the following text

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Decorated with figures of animals, flowers, human beings, etc., as the large illuminated letters of medieval manuscripts, and in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries woodcut initial-letters for books, or as surface-ornament in carving, etc.

Etymologies

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

Medieval Latin historiātus, from Latin historia, history; see history.

Examples

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