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[ih-skuhch-uh n] /ɪˈskʌtʃ ən/
a shield or shieldlike surface on which a coat of arms is depicted.
an ornamental or protective plate around a keyhole, door handle, drawer pull, light switch, etc.
Nautical. a panel on the stern of a vessel bearing its name and port of registry.
blot on one's escutcheon, a stain on one's reputation; disgrace.
1470-80; < Old North French escuchonLatin scūtum shield
Related forms
escutcheoned, adjective
unescutcheoned, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for escutcheon
  • To repair it, remove the faucet handle and escutcheon.
  • Other installments emphasize the putti with the papal escutcheon at the top.
  • All damaged plaster or wall surfaces shall be concealed by the jack escutcheon plate.
  • Equip valve with four-arm handle, serrated hose end, and wall escutcheon.
  • Install escutcheon plates, replace system gauges, replace two inspector test valves and piping.
  • There may even be a listed sprinkler escutcheon to conceal the hole.
  • In elaborately decorated ceilings, heads should be camouflaged by custom coating and omitting escutcheon plates.
British Dictionary definitions for escutcheon


a shield, esp a heraldic one that displays a coat of arms
Also called escutcheon plate. a plate or shield that surrounds a keyhole, door handle, light switch, etc, esp an ornamental one protecting a door or wall surface
the place on the stern or transom of a vessel where the name is shown
blot on one's escutcheon, a stain on one's honour
Derived Forms
escutcheoned, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Old Northern French escuchon, ultimately from Latin scūtum shield
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 escutcheon

late 15c., from Old North French escuchon, variant of Old French escusson, from Vulgar Latin *scutionem, from Latin scutum "shield" (see hide (n.1)).

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

in furniture design, an armorial shield sometimes applied to the centre of pediments on pieces of fine furniture and, also, the metal plate that surrounds a keyhole or the pivoting metal plate that sometimes covers the keyhole. The keyhole escutcheon has been used on cabinets and desks since the European Middle Ages, the designs matching the other metal mounts, such as hinges, and varying according to the fashions of the day. Early escutcheons were of wrought iron and might be quite plain, simply serving to prevent wear. From the 17th century, brass, which could be worked in finer designs, was used on fine furniture. For the most lavish designs, ormolu (gilded bronze or cast brass decoration) was used, especially in 18th-century France.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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