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epigraph

[ep-i-graf, -grahf] /ˈɛp ɪˌgræf, -ˌgrɑf/
noun
1.
an inscription, especially on a building, statue, or the like.
2.
an apposite quotation at the beginning of a book, chapter, etc.
Origin
1615-1625
1615-25; < Greek epigraphḗ inscription. See epi-, -graph
Can be confused
epigram, epigraph, epitaph, epithet.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for epigraph
  • Each starts from an epigraph and then meditates on each of the substantive words therein.
  • The verse spoke for itself but its epigraph was equally forthcoming.
British Dictionary definitions for epigraph

epigraph

/ˈɛpɪˌɡrɑːf; -ˌɡræf/
noun
1.
a quotation at the beginning of a book, chapter, etc, suggesting its theme
2.
an inscription on a monument or building
Derived Forms
epigraphic (ˌɛpɪˈɡræfɪk), epigraphical, adjective
epigraphically, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Greek epigraphē; see epigram
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for epigraph
n.

1620s, "inscription on a building, statue, etc.," from Greek epigraphe "an inscription," from epigraphein "to write on," from epi "on" (see epi-) + graphein "to write" (see -graphy). Sense of "motto; short, pithy sentence at the head of a book or chapter" first recorded in English 1844.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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16
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