\ˈpānt \
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

In a century whose art drifted further and further from representation, Neel made her reputation painting portraits, frequently of artists, noted for their light touch, affection and psychological insight. William Meyers, WSJ, "‘Eye to I: Self-Portraits From 1900 to Today’ Review: How Artists See Themselves," 19 Nov. 2018 Many of us had painted faces, and a few wore multicolored tutus or ribbons or buttons. Susan Keaton, Naperville Sun, "Keaton: Pride Parade was a glorious experience – why not bring it to Naperville?," 28 June 2018 Over the course of two decades starting in 1963, Berann painted around 20 panoramas and landscapes for the magazine, depicting everything from the two-square-mile Saba Island in the Caribbean to the entire Himalayan mountain range. Betsy Mason, National Geographic, "Gorgeous Panoramic Paintings of National Parks Now Online," 28 June 2018 The damage, which included spray painting the historic memorial's parking signage, is listed at approximately $2,100, according to police. Aaron Randle, kansascity, "Police ask for help identifying Liberty Memorial vandals," 25 June 2018 There was a long, 200-meter runway bisecting a courtyard at the Palais-Royale, painted in the full spectrum, bathed in the French sun. Melvin Backman, GQ, "At Louis Vuitton, Virgil Abloh Goes Over the Rainbow," 22 June 2018 His black 2011 Chevrolet Silverado had been spray-painted with swastikas. Breanna Edwards, The Root, "‘Wite Pride’: Black Lives Matter Activist’s Truck Vandalized With Swastikas, Racial Slurs," 20 June 2018 Be sure to practice patience and wait for favorable weather to complete the project, do ample painting prep work, and allow the coats to dry completely in between. 7. Melissa Rolland,, "Projects That Don't Break The Bank," 19 June 2018 The Amtec-Kistler car wash attacks paint with a rotating wheel of wet brushes, to simulate microscopic scratches that happen during, well, car washes. Jacqueline Detwiler, Popular Mechanics, "Don't Let This Mad Scratch Machine Anywhere Near Your Car," 17 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Their appearance was theatrical: Favors and Mr. Jarman wore face paint and flamboyant robes, Bowie usually donned a white lab coat, and Mr. Mitchell often wore business suits. Martin Johnson, WSJ, "‘The Art Ensemble of Chicago and Associated Ensembles’ Review: First-Rate Riffs From the Second City," 3 Dec. 2018 And how about the paint marker and some of this other stuff? Dani Deahl, The Verge, "What’s in your bag, Claude VonStroke?," 30 Nov. 2018 Tie your hair into a severely low bun and paint on a dramatic smokey eye to match their OTT makeup. Halie Lesavage, Glamour, "Why The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Is the Perfect Last-Minute Halloween Costume Inspiration," 25 Oct. 2018 No, this is the mascara that quite literally coats your lashes with an opaque, paint-like level of formula with one swipe, creating a genuine falsie-level finish. Chloe Metzger, Marie Claire, "The 5 Truly Excellent Beauty Products I'm Loving This Week," 24 Oct. 2018 Then, dab some of the black paint over the blue and rub with a paper towel so the blue is duller, but still there. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "How To DIY A Galaxy Jack O' Lantern This Halloween," 19 Oct. 2018 Once there, we were greeted wordlessly by some Navajo cowboys and paired up with our mounts, mine a paint gelding with a wild look in his eyes. Guy Trebay, Condé Nast Traveler, "In the Heart of Navajo Lands," 19 Oct. 2018 Pick your favorite bright colors and spray paint skeleton decorations for this look. Elle Decor Editors, ELLE Decor, "20 Halloween Party Ideas So Sophisticated They’ll Scare You," 18 Oct. 2018 The crockmeter involves moving a robotic finger over paint repeatedly, rubbing until surface scratches are created. Jacqueline Detwiler, Popular Mechanics, "Don't Let This Mad Scratch Machine Anywhere Near Your Car," 17 Oct. 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

7 Dec 2018

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 \
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

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living or existing for a long time

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