Definition of "stencil" [sten•cil]

  • A sheet, as of plastic or cardboard, in which a desired lettering or design has been cut so that ink or paint applied to the sheet will reproduce the pattern on the surface beneath. (noun)
  • The lettering or design produced with such a sheet. (noun)
  • The process of printing with such a sheet. (noun)
  • To mark with a stencil. (verb-transitive)
  • To produce by stencil. (verb-transitive)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "stencil" in a sentence
  • "A child plays with a toy, depicted in stencil grafitti art by the Mother Monkey Collective of Mexico City."
  • "The "Carnal!!!" stencil is ubiquitous in Mexico City's Coyoacan district."
  • "Most modern art aficionados know that if mysterious British artist Banksy didn't create the urban world's love affair with quirky riddles in stencil art on public walls, then he certainly spearheaded its emergence into light — at least from a broader (if somewhat bemused and undecided) public's point of view."