Definitions

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

  • n. A durable, washable material made in sheets by pressing a mixture of heated linseed oil, rosin, powdered cork, and pigments onto a burlap or canvas backing. Linoleum is used as a covering especially for floors.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An inexpensive waterproof covering used especially for floors, made from solidified linseed oil over a burlap or canvas backing, or from its modern replacement, polyvinyl chloride.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Linseed oil brought to various degrees of hardness by some oxidizing process, as by exposure to heated air, or by treatment with chloride of sulphur. In this condition it is used for many of the purposes to which India rubber has been applied.
  • n. A kind of floor cloth made by laying hardened linseed oil mixed with ground cork on a canvas backing.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A kind of floor-cloth made of linseed-oil which has been oxidized to a dense rubber-like consistency.

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

  • n. a floor covering

Etymologies

Originally a trademark.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Coined c. 1864 by inventor Frederick Walton, from Latin linum ("flax") + oleum ("oil"). Used as a trade name but never registered as a trademark, it was the first product whose name was ruled to be genericized. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The top is some kind of linoleum from the 1960's which I kept painting year after year and covering with with a clear waterproof sealer.

    Kitchen Replacement

  • Our beds are best described as two wide, wooden tables covered in linoleum which may or may not have been cleaned with soap and water since they were built.

    Boing Boing: September 25, 2005 - October 1, 2005 Archives

  • The parquet floors were covered in linoleum, the high plaster ceilings hidden by acoustic tiles.

    Someplace Like Home

  • [...] or vinyl for infantile bedrooms Kitchen soils in linoleum Soils of PVC of Quarry stone Route/Freshome Posted by darrell jones at 11: 05 [...]

    Interior Design Patterns from Hand

  • Lying on the linoleum was a severed moose hoof and a half rack of frozen ribs.

    The Tenth Circle

  • Those bright red drops spattering the linoleum were the final outrage.

    Harvest

  • Eric's parents went to high school dances at the Leo gymnasium when they were teenagers; his mother, Tyra, noticed the linoleum was the same when she returned with Eric for orientation.

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  • For Interior applications it can be applied to flat, smooth, non-porous surfaces such as linoleum, tile, wood floors or staircases.

    Boing Boing: July 25, 2004 - July 31, 2004 Archives

  • Rooibos case as it was sub judice, but several other common terms such as linoleum, kerosene, escalator were all at one time registered trademarks.

    ANC Daily News Briefing

  • Alternatives include carpets certified as no VOC, hard wood as long as it’s formaldehyde free, and linoleum, which is hypoallergenic and is made from renewable resources.

    Never Mind the Earth, Green Your Home for Your Health

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