9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[pik-tuh-graf, -grahf] /ˈpɪk təˌgræf, -ˌgrɑf/
a pictorial sign or symbol.
a record consisting of pictorial symbols, as a prehistoric cave drawing or a graph or chart with symbolic figures representing a certain number of people, cars, factories, etc.
Origin of pictograph
1850-55; < Latin pict(us) painted (see picture) + -o- + -graph
Related forms
[pik-tuh-graf-ik] /ˌpɪk təˈgræf ɪk/ (Show IPA),
pictographically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for pictographs
  • There are pictographs in our hills and bones in our caves.
  • The firm produces pictographs, the trade term for graphs in which the medium of expression is pictures--bags of gold for wealth.
  • The walls, caves, and alcoves of this sandstone monolith are adorned with their elaborate pictographs.
  • pictographs are prehistoric rock paintings found in many of the area's rockshelters.
  • pictographs are designs or figures that have been painted on the surface of the rock with variously colored pigments.
  • Create simple pictographs or symbols for the nouns and combine the pictographs to create a character.
  • Other images, called pictographs, were made by applying mineral substances to the rock surface.
  • Oils from your fingers can cause the pictographs to deteriorate.
  • The pictographs were probably painted with a mixture of powdered lime, plentiful on this coral island, and tree sap.
  • Petroglyphs are images pecked into rock while pictographs are painted images.
British Dictionary definitions for pictographs


/ˈpɪktəˌɡrɑːf; -ˌɡræf/
a picture or symbol standing for a word or group of words, as in written Chinese
a chart on which symbols are used to represent values, such as population levels or consumption
Derived Forms
pictographic (ˌpɪktəˈɡræfɪk) adjective
pictography (pɪkˈtɒɡrəfɪ) noun
Word Origin
C19: from Latin pictus, from pingere to paint
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 pictographs



"picture or symbol representing an idea," 1851, from Latin pictus "painted," past participle of pingere "to paint" (see paint (v.)) + -graph "something written." First used in reference to American Indian writing. Related: Pictography.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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