Engraving is a process by which grooves are cut into a hard surface. This process is usually done to create elaborate images, or advertisements on the available surface. Suitable materials for engraving include (but are not limited to) steel, glass, and gold. Engraving by hand has typically been replaced by other means of image and text printing, due in part to the difficulties associated with becoming a master engraver. A more common way of engraving now would be to use a CNC machine, which may even use a laser to engrave certain pieces.
This process was (and still is) typically seen on vases, commemorative plaques, watches, and even headstones for graveyards. Below is an example of how a CNC router/engraver works.