\ ˈpānt How to pronounce paint (audio) \
painted; painting; paints

Definition of paint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a(1) : to apply color, pigment, or paint to
(2) : to color with a cosmetic
b(1) : to apply with a movement resembling that used in painting
(2) : to treat with a liquid by brushing or swabbing paint the wound with iodine
2a(1) : to produce in lines and colors on a surface by applying pigments
(2) : to depict by such lines and colors
b : to decorate, adorn, or variegate by applying lines and colors
c : to produce or evoke as if by painting paints glowing pictures of the farm
3 : to touch up or cover over by or as if by painting
4 : to depict as having specified or implied characteristics paints them whiter than the evidence justifies— Oliver La Farge

intransitive verb

1 : to practice the art of painting
2 : to use cosmetics



Definition of paint (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the action of painting : something produced by painting
2 : makeup especially : a cosmetic to add color
3a(1) : a mixture of a pigment and a suitable liquid to form a closely adherent coating when spread on a surface in a thin coat
(2) : the pigment used in this mixture especially when in the form of a cake a box of paints
b : an applied coating of paint
4 or paint horse : a horse marked with patches of white and another color : pinto specifically : american paint horse
6 : color manipulation on a computer screen in a manner reminiscent of painting usually used before another noun a paint program

Examples of paint in a Sentence

Verb I need to paint the bookcase. We're going to paint the room yellow. The classroom wall was painted with clouds and rainbows. He painted that portrait of his wife. She painted the landscape on a square canvas. I like to draw and my sister likes to paint. The beauty of the world inspires me to paint. He paints mostly in oils. The study paints a bleak picture of the effects of pollution on animal life. Noun Apply paint to the canvas in a series of short strokes. I need more blue paint. The old walls are coated with several layers of paint. a can of latex paint The house needs a fresh coat of paint. The store sells many different paints. Did you chip the paint? The car's paint is cracking. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb When Amazon tried to paint organizers as outsiders, the accusations were laughable, Nelson said, especially when workers would leave work after their shift then set up a barbecue for commuting co-workers at the neighboring bus stop. Washington Post, 25 Apr. 2022 DePerno has repeatedly derided Leonard as a RINO or Republican-in-Name-Only and tried to paint him as an establishment politician. Clara Hendrickson, Detroit Free Press, 23 Apr. 2022 Bickers defense team tried to paint Mitchell as a liar who sold out others to save his own skin. Leon Stafford, ajc, 23 Mar. 2022 Burgum tried to paint Stenehjem as part of an establishment that had done a poor job at managing money and put the state’s future in doubt. Fox News, 30 Jan. 2022 As Democrats’ agenda has been stalled by Senate Republicans, McCarthy and other leaders have tried to paint Democrats as singularly focused on the Jan. 6 committee. Arit John, Los Angeles Times, 19 Jan. 2022 The case is now in the hands of the defense, which has tried to paint the brothers as criminals and homophobes who were using Smollett to advance their own budding acting careers. Jason Meisner,, 3 Dec. 2021 That's when video went viral of Travis McMichael shooting Arbery, something his lawyers have tried to paint as self defense. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 24 Nov. 2021 Hogue tried to paint Arbery as responsible for what happened. CBS News, 23 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Awards will be given in seven categories ranging from Best of show and best interior, best paint to best wooden car/wagon and most original. Linda Mcintosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 6 May 2022 Fresh paint, new windows, and natural wood trim got it back in line with its Pacific Northwest roots. Natalie Dayton, Better Homes & Gardens, 5 May 2022 Professor Bobby Duffy, a social scientist at King’s College London, has a wake-up call for marketers: Strategies focused on segmenting customers by demographic generation, like adults ages 25-54, only paint half the picture. Dan Robbins, Forbes, 5 May 2022 For the occasion, Delevingne wore a red suit Dior suit with nothing but gold body paint (and pasties) underneath. Carrie Wittmer, Glamour, 4 May 2022 The state had made progress over the past 30 years in reducing its waste stream, with such measures as the bottle bill, single stream recycling and recycling of paint, mattresses and electronics. Tom Condon, Hartford Courant, 4 May 2022 This has impacted the prices of petrochemicals, which are the key raw materials for industries such as pharmaceutical packaging, automobiles, paint, polyester, and synthetic rubber. Mimansa Verma, Quartz, 2 May 2022 The works in the Doge’s Palace (including one that seems to show the palace itself on fire beneath a winged lion, the symbol of Venice) are thick with paint, lead and other metals glistening silver and gold. Washington Post, 29 Apr. 2022 There is also a more informal art studio elsewhere on campus, where creators can experiment with screen printing, paint, yarn, appliqués, and just about everything else. Rosa Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 27 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'paint.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of paint


13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a(1)


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for paint


Middle English, from Anglo-French paint, peint, past participle of peindre, from Latin pingere to tattoo, embroider, paint; akin to Old English fāh variegated, Greek poikilos variegated, pikros sharp, bitter

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Last Updated

9 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Paint.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for paint


\ ˈpānt How to pronounce paint (audio) \
painted; painting

Kids Definition of paint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to cover a surface with or as if with paint I'm painting the wall.
2 : to make a picture or design by using paints
3 : to describe clearly The report painted an encouraging picture of restored habitats.

Other Words from paint

painter noun



Kids Definition of paint (Entry 2 of 2)

: a mixture of coloring matter with a liquid that forms a dry coating when spread on a surface

More from Merriam-Webster on paint

Nglish: Translation of paint for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of paint for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about paint


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