- lac that has been purified and formed into thin sheets, used for making varnish.
- a varnish (shellac varnish) made by dissolving this material in alcohol or a similar solvent.
- a phonograph record made of a breakable material containing shellac, especially one to be played at 78 r.p.m.: an LP that can hold nearly 10 times as much as the old shellac.
verb (used with object), shel·lacked, shel·lack·ing.
- to coat or treat with shellac.
- to defeat; trounce.
- to thrash soundly.
- a yellowish resin secreted by the lac insect, esp a commercial preparation of this used in varnishes, polishes, and leather dressings
- Also called: shellac varnish a varnish made by dissolving shellac in ethanol or a similar solvent
- a gramophone record based on shellac
verb -lacs, -lacking or -lacked (tr)
- to coat or treat (an article) with a shellac varnish
- US slang to defeat completely
n.1713, from shell (n.) + lac (see lacquer). Translates French laque en écailles “lac in thin plates.” v.1876, from shellack (n.). The slang sense of “beat soundly” is 1920s, perhaps from the notion of shellac as a “finish.” Shellacked “drunk” is from 1922 (cf. plastered). Related: Shellacking.