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

  • n. A resinous preparation of shellac and turpentine that is soft and fluid when heated but solidifies upon cooling, used to seal letters, batteries, or jars.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Wax formerly melted onto a letter to seal it; the picture of the sender's seal was often pressed into the wax as evidence that the letter had not been opened.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • A compound of the resinous materials, pigments, etc., used as a material for seals, as for letters, documents, etc.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Shellac and rosin melted with turpentine, colored with suitable coloring matters, usually vermilion, and run into molds: used for making seals.
  • Resembling red sealing-wax: specifically said of the peculiar tips of the feathers of the waxwings. See waxwing, Ampelis.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. fastener consisting of a resinous composition that is plastic when warm; used for sealing documents and parcels and letters


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • Hmm, so we weren't singing about Puff and ceiling wax?

    January 26, 2008

  • It's a good thing to talk about, especially with shoes, ships, cabbages, and kings.

    January 26, 2008

  • Sealing wax was used to seal "letters close" and later (from about the 16th century) envelopes. It was also used to take the impression of seals on important documents, or to create a hermetic seal on containers. Now mainly used for decorative purposes, it was formerly used to ensure that the contents of the envelope were secure.


    January 25, 2008