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A term sometimes used to refer to the corrosive solution in which a metal plate is etched for intaglio printing. The concentration of this bath is precisely measured, as is the period of a plate’s submersion.


Hand tool used to firmly rub the back of the sheet of paper in order to pick up ink from the matrix.


A roller used to spread ink on a matrix.


A physical surface that can be manipulated to hold ink, which is then transferred to paper. Most, though not all, matrices are able to print the same image many times. Matrices used in printmaking include blocks of wood, sheets of linoleum, metal plates, sheets of Plexiglass, and slabs of limestone.

Relief Carving Tools

Tools, such as chisels and knives, used to carve into a matrix of wood or linoleum.


An etching resist (such as hard ground or asphaltum) is applied to the plate in order to prevent an acid solution from corroding the surface. The artist scratches off the resist using a variety of etching tools: these lines are etched into the plate by exposing the bare metal to acid.