follow Dictionary.com

Write a Super Short Story to win an iPod!

touchstone

[tuhch-stohn] /ˈtʌtʃˌstoʊn/
noun
1.
a test or criterion for the qualities of a thing.
2.
a black siliceous stone formerly used to test the purity of gold and silver by the color of the streak produced on it by rubbing it with either metal.
Origin
1475-1485
1475-85; touch + stone
Synonyms
1. standard, measure, model, pattern.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for touch-stone

touchstone

/ˈtʌtʃˌstəʊn/
noun
1.
a criterion or standard by which judgment is made
2.
a hard dark siliceous stone, such as basalt or jasper, that is used to test the quality of gold and silver from the colour of the streak they produce on it
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for touch-stone

touchstone

n.

late 15c., from touch (v.) + stone (n.). Black quartz, used for testing the quality of gold and silver alloys by the color of the streak made by rubbing them on it. Cf. also basalt. Figurative sense is from 1530s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for touchstone

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for touch

10
11
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with touch-stone