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in·​car·​na·​dine in-ˈkär-nə-ˌdīn How to pronounce incarnadine (audio)
: having the pinkish color of flesh
: red
especially : bloodred


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incarnadined; incarnadining

transitive verb

: to make incarnadine : redden

Did you know?

Carn- is the Latin root for "flesh," and "incarnates" is Latin for flesh-colored. English speakers picked up the "pinkish" sense of "incarnadine" back in the late 1500s. Since then, the adjective has come to refer to the dark red color of freshly cut, fleshy meat as well as to the pinkish color of the outer skin of some humans. The word can be used as a verb, too, meaning "to redden." Shakespeare used it that way in Macbeth: "Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood clean from my hand? No, this my hand will rather the multitudinous seas incarnadine, making the green one red."

Examples of incarnadine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
The colors are too much for words: imperial purple, incarnadine orange, gold. Ben Huberman, Longreads, 8 Sep. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'incarnadine.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Middle French incarnadin, from Old Italian incarnadino, from incarnato flesh-colored, from Late Latin incarnatus

First Known Use


1591, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1605, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of incarnadine was in 1591


Dictionary Entries Near incarnadine

Cite this Entry

“Incarnadine.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 May. 2024.

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