A small square or cube of a hard material. Tessera have been made of bone, wood, stone, ceramic, and glass. In ancient times, they were used a token, tally, or ticket. In Greece and Rome, tessera were used to make decorative mosaic patterns.
Synonyms and Related Terms
tesela (Esp.); tesselle (Fr.); tessera (It.); tessela (Port.)
Sources Checked for Data in Record
- Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
- Dictionary of Building Preservation, Ward Bucher, ed., John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York City, 1996
- Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
- The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998