pen·​ti·​men·​to | \ ˌpen-tə-ˈmen-(ˌ)tō How to pronounce pentimento (audio) \
plural pentimenti\ ˌpen-​tə-​ˈmen-​(ˌ)tē \

Definition of pentimento

: a reappearance in a painting of an original drawn or painted element which was eventually painted over by the artist

Examples of pentimento in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Alabama’s flag is a giant crimson X, St. Andrew’s cross, that’s almost a pentimento of the Confederate flag. Karen Heller, Washington Post, "The battle for Alabama’s soul," 1 July 2019

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

First Known Use of pentimento

1823, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pentimento

Italian, literally, repentance, correction, from pentire to repent, from Latin paenitēre — more at penitent

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Time Traveler for pentimento

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The first known use of pentimento was in 1823

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Cite this Entry

“Pentimento.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Jul. 2020.

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