\ 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

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Examples of paint in a Sentence


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.


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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Officials shared photos via Facebook of the city's new rainbow crosswalk being painted at 25th and Ball and 25th and Sealy streets Tuesday. Rebecca Hennes, Houston Chronicle, "Galveston celebrates LGBT Pride month with new rainbow crosswalk," 5 June 2019 In the letter, KMG told the ride operator how to address the corrosion, including how to clean and paint inside the steel arm to prevent rusting. Washington Post, "Lawsuit: Thrill ride maker knew of defect before fatal crash," 5 June 2019 The originals, painted between 1960 and 1975 and seen by millions over the generations, were carefully cut from the walls when the hall was closed for renovation in 2014. Roger Catlin, Smithsonian, "Meet the Master Muralist Who Inspired Today’s Generation of Paleoartists," 5 June 2019 House of Kobe Schererville's owner, Eric Chiang, donated the paint, and Mike Vetromila, of Morocco, went to work smoothing out the dents and painting Mutt's name on the back of the sidecar. Michelle L. Quinn, Post-Tribune, "With the help of friends, Iraq war veteran gets motorcycle sidecar for service dog," 5 June 2019 The children pictured helped paint two murals there. charlotteobserver, "After 50 years, innovation and collaboration keep this Charlotte arts group buzzing," 4 June 2019 The author moves swiftly through Mr Hockney’s life, painting a fictional portrait of his adolescence in working-class Yorkshire through to his globe-trotting adulthood as one of Britain’s most famous living artists. The Economist, "A fictionalised biography of David Hockney," 4 June 2019 Custom lighting throughout the home was chosen to fit the scale of each spacious room including the open two-story foyer, and the railings mix painted and hickory wood for a sleek look. Monica Lander, The Mercury News, "Sponsored: One of a Kind: A contemporary showplace with inviting ambience and divine updates," 4 June 2019 Take, for example, the practice of painting walls and leaving ceilings white. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "3 Top Interior Designers Share the Rules They Always Break," 30 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

With few deterrents in the paint, the Raptors feasted on a buffet of easy buckets. Michael Shapiro,, "How DeMarcus Cousins Helped Flip the NBA Finals," 5 June 2019 Those delivered in the first half of 2019 will get only $3,750, while those delivered in the second half of 2019 will earn their buyers a tax credit of just $1,875—barely enough to offset the $1,500 option to get your Model 3 in red paint. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "The $7,500 Tax Credit for Buying a Tesla Is Going Away," 12 July 2018 Before the family moves in, a worker inspects their apartment for mold, frayed wires, peeling paint, smoke detectors and other problems, according to Catholic Charities. Richard Webner, San Antonio Express-News, "Refugees flee war-torn homelands for deteriorating apartment complexes in S.A.," 30 June 2018 Photographs of its interior, a magnificent three-tiered space, show a ceiling scarred by peeling paint. Blair Kamin,, "It's great that the Uptown Theatre has a future. What kind of future will it be?," 29 June 2018 The list price, coupled with the photos of peeling green paint and a haphazardly leaning fence at 54 Waverly St., has already grabbed some attention online. Jaclyn Reiss,, "For sale in Brighton: A dilapidated, 3-bedroom home — for $800,000," 27 June 2018 With fading and peeling paint, Knievel’s private living quarters were dusty and run down. Shaun Goodwin, kansascity, "How the heck did an Evel Knievel museum wind up in northeast Kansas?," 26 June 2018 Spartanburg Christian senior Grayson Ray once had the temerity to stand in the paint as Williamson stampeded in his direction with a full head of steam. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Few. The Proud. The Players Who Have Been Run Over by Zion Williamson.," 5 Dec. 2018 Johnson put the ball on the floor to beat the 7-1 Zhou Qi to get in the paint. J. Michael, Indianapolis Star, "Evaluating 4 key performances for Pacers in Las Vegas summer league opening loss," 6 July 2018

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.

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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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Statistics for paint

Last Updated

8 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for paint

The first known use of paint was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for paint



English Language Learners Definition of paint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cover (something) with paint : to put paint on (something)
: to make (a picture or design) by using paints
: to describe (someone or something) in a particular way



English Language Learners Definition of paint (Entry 2 of 2)

: a liquid that dries to form a thin colored layer when it is spread on a surface
: a layer of dried paint on a surface


\ 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

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More from Merriam-Webster on paint

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with paint

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for paint

Spanish Central: Translation of paint

Nglish: Translation of paint for Spanish Speakers

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

Comments on paint

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


incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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