a protective coating consisting of a resin, cellulose ester, or both, dissolved in a volatile solvent, sometimes with pigment added.
any of various resinous varnishes, especially a resinous varnish obtained from a Japanese tree, Rhus verniciflua, used to produce a highly polished, lustrous surface on wood or the like.
Also called lacquer ware, lacquerware. ware, especially of wood, coated with such a varnish, and often inlaid: They collected fine Oriental lacquers.
Slang. any volatile solvent that produces euphoria when inhaled.
verb (used with object)
to coat with lacquer.
to cover, as with facile or fluent words or explanations cleverly worded, etc.; obscure the faults of; gloss (often followed by over ): The speech tended to lacquer over the terrible conditions.
Also, lacker.

1570–80; earlier leckar, laker < Portuguese lacre, lacar, unexplained variant of laca < Arabic lakk < Persian lâk lac1

lacquerer, noun
relacquer, verb (used with object)
unlacquered, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
lacquer (ˈlækə)
1.  a hard glossy coating made by dissolving cellulose derivatives or natural resins in a volatile solvent
2.  a black resinous substance, obtained from certain trees, used to give a hard glossy finish to wooden furniture
3.  lacquer tree Also called: varnish tree an E Asian anacardiaceous tree, Rhus verniciflua, whose stem yields a toxic exudation from which black lacquer is obtained
4.  Also called: hair lacquer a mixture of shellac and alcohol for spraying onto the hair to hold a style in place
5.  art decorative objects coated with such lacquer, often inlaid
6.  (tr) to apply lacquer to
[C16: from obsolete French lacre sealing wax, from Portuguese lacalac1]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1670s, from Fr. lacre "a kind of sealing wax," from Port. lacre, unexplained variant of lacca "resinous substance," from Arabic lakk, from Pers. lak (see lac). The verb meaning "to cover or coat with laqueur" is from 1680s. Related: Lacquered.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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