Definitions for pinchbeckˈpɪntʃ bɛk

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word pinchbeck

Princeton's WordNet

  1. pinchbeck(adj)

    an alloy of copper and zinc that is used in cheap jewelry to imitate gold

  2. pinchbeck(adj)

    serving as an imitation or substitute

    "pinchbeck heroism"


  1. pinchbeck(Noun)

    An alloy of copper and zinc once used as imitation gold for cheap jewelry.

  2. pinchbeck(Adjective)

    Made of pinchbeck.

  3. pinchbeck(Adjective)

    Sham; spurious, artificial; being a cheap substitution; only superficially attractive.

  4. Origin: Named after Christopher Pinchbeck, an 18th century London watchmaker who developed the alloy.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Pinchbeck(noun)

    an alloy of copper and zinc, resembling gold; a yellow metal, composed of about three ounces of zinc to a pound of copper. It is much used as an imitation of gold in the manufacture of cheap jewelry

  2. Pinchbeck(adj)

    made of pinchbeck; sham; cheap; spurious; unreal

  3. Origin: [Said to be from the name of the inventor; cf. It. prencisbecco.]


  1. Pinchbeck

    "Pinchbeck" is a form of brass, an alloy of copper and zinc, mixed in proportions so that it closely resembles gold in appearance. It was invented in the 18th century by Christopher Pinchbeck, a London clockmaker. Since gold was only sold in 18-carat quality at that time, the development of pinchbeck allowed ordinary people to buy gold 'effect' jewelry on a budget. The inventor allegedly made pinchbeck jewellery clearly labelled as such. Pinchbeck jewellery was used in places like stagecoaches where there was a risk of theft. Later dishonest jewellers passed pinchbeck off as gold; over the years it came to mean a cheap and tawdry imitation of gold. Pinchbeck typically comprises copper and zinc in ratios between 89% Cu, 11% Zn; and 93% Cu, 7% Zn.

Translations for pinchbeck

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