Definition of pietra dura in English:

Share this entry

pietra dura

Pronunciation: /ˌpjɛtrə ˈduːrə/


[mass noun]
Pictorial mosaic work using semi-precious stones, typically for table tops and other furniture: panels of pietra dura [as modifier]: a Florentine pietra dura top
More example sentences
  • A perfect case in point was the fabulous Florentine pietra dura table top offered by Christie's on 9 June.
  • Always eager to experiment, he also perfected pietra dura mosaic.
  • A expert craftsman can use it not only to imitate pietra dura but also to achieve almost painterly effects.


Early 19th century: from Italian (plural pietre dure), literally 'hard stone'.

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.