BRAZIL 13 (Graffiti)
n. pl. graf·fi·ti (-tē)
A drawing or inscription made on a wall or other surface, usually so as to be seen by the public. Often used in the plural.
[Italian, diminutive of graffio, a scratching, scribble, probably from graffiare, to scratch, scribble, probably from Vulgar Latin *graphiāre, to write with a stylus, from Latin graphium, stylus, from Greek grapheion, graphion, from graphein, to write; see gerbh- in Indo-European roots.]
1851, for ancient wall inscriptions found in the ruins of Pompeii, from It. graffiti, pl. of graffito "a scribbling," a dim. formation from graffio "a scratch or scribble," from graffiare "to scribble."
Sense extended 1877 to recently made crude drawings and scribbling.
Nov 30, 2008