Progressive addition lenses (PALs) are engraved with permanent marks at standardized locations in order to guarantee correct centering and alignment throughout the manufacturing and mounting processes. Out of the production line, engraved marks provide useful information about the PAL as well as act as locator marks to re-ink again the removable marks. Even though those marks should be visible by simple visual inspection with the naked eye, engraving marks are often faint and weak, obscured by scratches, and partially occluded and difficult to recognize on tinted or antireflection-coated lenses. Here, we present an extremely simple optical device (named as wavefront holoscope) for visualization and characterization of permanent marks in PAL based on digital in-line holography. Essentially, a point source of coherent light illuminates the engraved mark placed just before a CCD camera that records a classical Gabor in-line hologram. The recorded hologram is then digitally processed to provide a set of high-contrast images of the engraved marks. Experimental results are presented showing the applicability of the proposed method as a new ophthalmic instrument for visualization and characterization of engraved marks in PALs.