Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

trompe l'oeil

play
noun, often attributive \(ˌ)trȯmp-ˈlə-ē, trōⁿp-ˈlœi\

Simple Definition of trompe l'oeil

  • : a style of painting in which things are painted in a way that makes them look like real objects

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of trompe l'oeil

  1. 1 :  a style of painting in which objects are depicted with photographically realistic detail; also :  the use of similar technique in interior decorating

  2. 2 :  a trompe l'oeil painting or effect

  3. 3 :  something that misleads or deceives the senses :  illusion

Origin and Etymology of trompe l'oeil

French trompe-l'œil, literally, deceives the eye


First Known Use: 1889


Learn More about trompe l'oeil


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up trompe l'oeil? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

different from the usual or normal

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alphabet-pasta-spelling-help

Which is the correct spelling?

acommodate accommodate accomodate acommadate
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ