Open main menu

Wiktionary β

See also: -ink and ink.




From Old French enque, from Latin encaustum (purple ink used by Roman emperors to sign documents), from Ancient Greek ἔγκαυστον (énkauston, burned-in), from ἐν (en, in) + καίω (kaíō, burn).



ink (usually uncountable, plural inks)

A jar of ink.
  1. A pigment (or dye)-based fluid used for writing, printing etc.
  2. (countable) A particular type, color or container of this fluid.
  3. The black or dark-colored fluid ejected by squid, octopus etc, as a protective strategy.
  4. (slang, uncountable) Publicity.
    The TSA has been getting a lot of ink lately.
    • 1999, Washington Post (4 June 1999)
      [Judith] Hope [] has been getting ink by the barrelful with her regular interviews quoting conversations with the first lady, on subjects ranging from Senate ambitions to summer and post-White House living arrangements.
  5. (slang, uncountable) Tattoo work.
    • 1998, Richard Dooling, Brain Storm
      "I saw it hanging on the wall of a tattoo hut where I went to get some ink done ten years ago," he stuttered, flushing in splotches and squirming in his chair.
    • 1998, The Offspring, Pretty Fly (For a White Guy) (song)
      Now he's getting a tattoo. / Yeah, he's getting ink done. / He asked for a 13, / But they drew a 31.
  6. (slang) Cheap red wine.


Derived termsEdit



ink (third-person singular simple present inks, present participle inking, simple past and past participle inked)

  1. (transitive) To apply ink to; to cover or smear with ink.
  2. (transitive) To sign (a document) (with or as if with ink).
  3. (transitive) To apply a tattoo to (someone).



See alsoEdit