/groh tesk"/, adj.1. odd or unnatural in shape, appearance, or character; fantastically ugly or absurd; bizarre.2. fantastic in the shaping and combination of forms, as in decorative work combining incongruous human and animal figures with scrolls, foliage, etc.n.3. any grotesque object, design, person, or thing.[1555-65; < F < It grottesco (as n., grottesca grotesque decoration such as was appar. found in excavated dwellings), deriv. of grotta. See GROTTO, -ESQUE]
* * *In architecture and decorative art, a mural or sculptural decoration combining animal, human, and plant forms.The word derives from the Italian grottesco, in reference to the grottolike underground rooms (grotte) where such ornaments were found during the excavation of Roman buildings с 1500. The grotesque was revived in the Renaissance, and a fashion for it in 16th-century Italy quickly spread to the rest of Europe; it was used most frequently in fresco decoration (painted, carved, or molded) until the 19th century.
* * *in architecture and decorative art, fanciful mural or sculptural decoration involving mixed animal, human, and plant forms. The word is derived from the Italian grotteschi, referring to the grottoes in which these decorations were found c. 1500 during the excavation of Roman houses such as the Golden House of Nero. Grotesque decoration was common on 17th-century English and American case furniture.First revived in the Renaissance by the school of Raphael in Rome, the grotesque quickly came into fashion in 16th-century Italy and became popular throughout Europe. It remained so until the 19th century, being used most frequently in fresco decoration. Although the animal heads and other motifs sometimes have heraldic or symbolic significance, grotesque ornaments were, in general, purely decorative.
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