A Basic Glossary of Terms
for English Enamels on this Website

Bodkin A flat two-side needle with a slot in the larger end (which might be used to fish a ribbon through a camisole.)

Bonbonnière A box for sweets or candies.

Bombé A bulging shape, usually of the sides of a early box having a gilt-metal foot rim.

Bottle-Ticket A wavy-shaped label usually for wine or scent that hangs on a chain around the neck of a bottle.

Cartouche Generally means a wavy scalloped shape.

Cloakpegs A decorative knob that screws into a wall to hang a coat. (In America they were used as Mirror Rests to support a looking glass.)

Chamfered When a corner is cut off and flattened out to make a beveled edge.

Chased A metal is worked or "chased" by the enamel artist which gives it a three-dimensional effect because the metal is not removed, as opposed to engraved decoration where the metal is removed.

Châtelaine An object clipped on at the waist of the person wearing it which has a series of chains that contain useful things: Necessaires, Keys, Etuis, Watches. (Often worn by the Housekeeper to showher position in the household.)

Chinoiserie Usually decoration in the Chinese manner.

Diapering A crisscross pattern of diamond shaped lines usually associated with raised dot enamel decoration.

Embossed When the object is molded in relief (often pressed molded).

En Cage Enamel object made within a metal cage.

Etui A fitted-out box or container, i.e., etui for spectacles, etui for ascent bottle, etui for a manicure set.

Grisaille Usually means painted or decorated in tones of gray or black.

Japaned A varnish or lacquer type oriental decoration most often associated with Pontypool metal and enamel work in England.

Medallion An area or a reserve on an enamel surface that is usually round or oval in shape and is used for decoration.

Nécessaires The generic term in English Enamel is Etui. A Necessaire is most often an oblong hinged object that holds things that a Lady finds "necessary": manicure, sewing, writing objects.

Putti Little Loved-Ones (Italian) or Cherubs (French)

Patch Box A small box (usually less than two inches in length) with a polished steel or blown glass mirror in the lid that contained flesh-colored patches to cover a skin blemish or pock mark. They were later darkened and became fashionable as "beauty-spots".

Transfer-print In enamel, a method of taking a decoration from an engraved copper plate via delicate transfer paper and ink, firing it onto an enamel surface - first thought to be introduced by the work at Battersea (the York House factory, London).