scumble

1 of 2

verb

scum·​ble ˈskəm-bəl How to pronounce scumble (audio)
scumbled; scumbling ˈskəm-b(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce scumble (audio)

transitive verb

1
a
: to make (something, such as color or a painting) less brilliant by covering with a thin coat of opaque or semiopaque color applied with a nearly dry brush
b
: to apply (a color) in this manner
2
: to soften the lines or colors of (a drawing) by rubbing lightly

scumble

2 of 2

noun

1
: the act or effect of scumbling
2
: a material used for scumbling

Did you know?

The history of scumble is blurry, but the word is thought to be related to the verb scum, an obsolete form of skim, meaning "to pass lightly over." Scumbling, as first perfected by artists such as Titian, involves passing dry, opaque coats of oil paint over a tinted background to create subtle tones and shadows. Although the painting technique dates to the 16th century, use of the word scumble is only known to have begun in the late 18th century. The related noun form soon followed.

Word History

Etymology

Verb

perhaps frequentative of scum entry 2

First Known Use

Verb

1798, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1834, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of scumble was in 1798

Podcast

Dictionary Entries Near scumble

Cite this Entry

“Scumble.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/scumble. Accessed 12 Apr. 2024.

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