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[byoo r-in, bur-] /ˈbyʊər ɪn, ˈbɜr-/
a tempered steel rod, with a lozenge-shaped point and a rounded handle, used for engraving furrows in metal.
a similar tool used by marble workers.
a prehistoric pointed or chisellike flint tool.
1655-65; < French < Italian burino (now bulino) graving tool, equivalent to bur- (perhaps < Germanic; see bore2) + -ino -ine2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for burin


a chisel of tempered steel with a sharp lozenge-shaped point, used for engraving furrows in metal, wood, or marble
an engraver's individual style
(archaeol) a prehistoric flint tool with a very small transverse edge
Word Origin
C17: from French, perhaps from Italian burino, of Germanic origin: compare Old High German boro auger; see bore1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for burin

engraver's tool, 1660s, from French burin, cognate with Italian bolino, Spanish buril, perhaps from Old High German bora "tool for boring" (see bore (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for burin

engraving tool with a metal shaft that is cut or ground diagonally downward to form a diamond-shaped point at the tip. The angle of the point of a particular tool affects the width and depth of the engraved lines. The shaft of the tool is fixed in a flat handle that can be held close to the working surface; it has a wide rounded end for bracing against the palm of the hand. The point is guided by thumb and forefinger.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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