Ivory I"vo*ry ([imac]"v[-o]*r[y^]), n.; pl. {Ivories}. [OE. ivori, F. ivoire, fr. L. eboreus made of ivory, fr. ebur, eboris, ivory, cf. Skr. ibha elephant. Cf. {Eburnean}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The hard, white, opaque, fine-grained substance constituting the tusks of the elephant. It is a variety of dentine, characterized by the minuteness and close arrangement of the tubes, as also by their double flexure. It is used in manufacturing articles of ornament or utility. [1913 Webster]

Note: Ivory is the name commercially given not only to the substance constituting the tusks of the elephant, but also to that of the tusks of the hippopotamus and walrus, the hornlike tusk of the narwhal, etc. [1913 Webster]

2. The tusks themselves of the elephant, etc. [1913 Webster]

3. Any carving executed in ivory. --Mollett. [1913 Webster]

4. pl. Teeth; as, to show one's ivories. [Slang] [1913 Webster]

{Ivory black}. See under {Black}, n.

{Ivory gull} (Zo["o]l.), a white Arctic gull ({Larus eburneus}).

{Ivory nut} (Bot.), the nut of a species of palm, the {Phytephas macroarpa}, often as large as a hen's egg. When young the seed contains a fluid, which gradually hardness into a whitish, close-grained, albuminous substance, resembling the finest ivory in texture and color, whence it is called {vegetable ivory}. It is wrought into various articles, as buttons, chessmen, etc. The palm is found in New Grenada. A smaller kind is the fruit of the {Phytephas microarpa}. The nuts are known in commerce as Corosso nuts.

{Ivory palm} (Bot.), the palm tree which produces ivory nuts.

{Ivory shell} (Zo["o]l.), any species of {Eburna}, a genus of marine gastropod shells, having a smooth surface, usually white with red or brown spots.

{Vegetable ivory}, the meat of the ivory nut. See {Ivory nut} (above). [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ivories —    Ivory was a popular and important medium in early medieval art; carved ivories served a variety of artistic purposes. Ivory was frequently used for liturgical objects and also for book covers and reliquaries. Ivory was also used for more… …   Encyclopedia of Barbarian Europe

  • ivories — [“aivriz] 1. n. the teeth. (See also china.) □ I gotta go brush my ivories. □ Look at those nice white ivories! 2. n. piano keys. (From when piano keys were made from real elephant ivory.) □ She can really bang those ivories …   Dictionary of American slang and colloquial expressions

  • ivories — noun /ˈaɪvəriːz/ a) The keys of a piano. b) The teeth. See Also: tinkle the ivories, tickle the ivories …   Wiktionary

  • ivories —  1. Piano keys, tickle the ivories Play the piano.  2. Billiard balls.  3. Teeth, rinse one s ivories Drink (usu. alcoholic liquor) …   A concise dictionary of English slang

  • ivories — Synonyms and related words: alveolar ridge, bird cage, bones, bridgework, choir, claviature, console, crap game, crap shooting, craps, crooked dice, cubes, dental bridge, dentition, denture, dice, die, echo, eighty eight, false teeth, fingerboard …   Moby Thesaurus

  • ivories — (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) n. pl. [piano] keys; dice, bones, cubes. See music, amusement …   English dictionary for students

  • ivories — n. (Slang) teeth; dice; keys of a piano i·vo·ry || aɪvÉ™rɪ n. hard white substance which makes up the tusks of elephants and other animals; something made from ivory; elephant tusk; yellowish white color; tooth (Slang) adj. of or like ivory,… …   English contemporary dictionary

  • ivories — informal a person s teeth. → ivory …   English new terms dictionary

  • ivories — Noun. Teeth …   English slang and colloquialisms

  • ivories — n. piano keys …   English slang

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