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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Gilding \Gild"ing\ (g[i^]ld"[i^]ng), n. 1. The art or practice of overlaying or covering with gold leaf; also, a thin coating or wash of gold, or of that which resembles gold. [1913 Webster] 2. Gold in leaf, powder, or liquid, for application to any surface. [1913 Webster] 3. Any superficial coating or appearance, as opposed to what is solid and genuine. [1913 Webster] Gilding metal, a tough kind of sheet brass from which cartridge shells are made. [1913 Webster]