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Definition of "inlay" [in•lay]

  • To set (pieces of wood or ivory, for example) into a surface, usually at the same level, to form a design. (verb-transitive)
  • To decorate by setting in such designs. (verb-transitive)
  • To insert (a photograph, for example) within a mat in a book. (verb-transitive)
  • Contrasting material set into a surface in pieces to form a design. (noun)
  • A design, pattern, or decoration made by inlaying. (noun)

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 "inlay" in a sentence
  • "The so-called Bosnian inlay is mainly of Albanian origin, and much of it actually Albanian handicraft."
  • "The inlay was a trifle scuffed from the axe's late use."
  • "When grafting limbs of large trees at this time of the year, one of the techniques used is called inlay bark grafting."