Definitions

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

  • n. A drawing or inscription made on a wall or other surface, usually so as to be seen by the public. Often used in the plural.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An informal inscription, as by a worker or vandal.
  • n. A single instance of graffiti in the art/vandalism sense.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Production of decorative designs by scratching them through a surface of layer plaster, glazing, etc., revealing a different-colored ground; also, pottery or ware so decorated; -- chiefly used attributively.
  • n. the singular form of graffiti, seldom used.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In archaeology, an ancient scribbling scratched, painted, or otherwise marked on a wall, column, tablet, or other surface.
  • n. In art, a scratching or scoring for the production of designs or effects.
  • n. A vessel of pottery decorated in graffito.

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

  • n. a rude decoration inscribed on rocks or walls

Etymologies

Italian, diminutive of graffio, a scratching, scribble, probably from graffiare, to scratch, scribble, probably from Vulgar Latin *graphiāre, to write with a stylus, from Latin graphium, stylus, from Greek grapheion, graphion, from graphein, to write.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Italian graffito. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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