Definition of


  1. (noun, artifact) graphic art consisting of an artistic composition made by applying paints to a surface
    he bought the painting as an investment
    his pictures hang in the Louvre
  2. (noun, artifact) a representation of a person or scene in the form of a print or transparent slide; recorded by a camera on light-sensitive material
  3. (noun, artifact) a visual representation (of an object or scene or person or abstraction) produced on a surface
    a movie is a series of images projected so rapidly that the eye integrates them
  4. (noun, cognition) a typical example of some state or quality
    she was the picture of despair
  5. (noun, cognition) a clear and telling mental image
    he had no clear picture of himself or his world
    the events left a permanent impression in his mind
  6. (noun, communication) the visible part of a television transmission
  7. (noun, communication) a form of entertainment that enacts a story by sound and a sequence of images giving the illusion of continuous movement
    the film was shot on location
  8. (noun, communication) illustrations used to decorate or explain a text
  9. (noun, communication) a graphic or vivid verbal description
    the author gives a depressing picture of life in Poland
    the pamphlet contained brief characterizations of famous Vermonters
  10. (noun, state) a situation treated as an observable object
    the religious scene in England has changed in the last century
  11. (verb, creation) imagine; conceive of; see in one's mind
    I can see what will happen
    I can see a risk in this strategy
  12. (verb, creation) show in, or as in, a picture
    the face of the child is rendered with much tenderness in this painting

via WordNet, Princeton University

Alternate forms of Picture

Derivations: depict, pictural, picture, picturing

Hyponyms: 3-d, 3d, abstraction, arial mosaic, beefcake, bitmap, black and white, blowup, blueprint, cat scan, cheesecake, chiaroscuro, cinema verite, cityscape, closeup, collage, collage film, coming attraction, computer graphic, cyclorama, daguerreotype, daub, diorama, distemper, docudrama, documentary, documentary film, echogram, electronic image, enlargement, epithet, feature, feature film, film noir, final cut, finger-painting, foil, frame, glossy, graphic, headshot, hologram, holograph, home movie, icon, iconography, ikon, illumination, illustrate, infotainment, inset, landscape, likeness, longshot, magnification, map, microdot, miniature, monochrome, montage, mosaic, mug shot, mugshot, mural, musical, musical comedy, musical theater, nude, nude painting, oil painting, panorama, pentimento, photocopy, photographic print, photomicrograph, photomosaic, portrait, portraiture, portrayal, print, radiogram, radiograph, reflection, reflexion, rough cut, sand painting, scan, scene, seascape, semblance, semi-abstraction, shadowgraph, shoot-'em-up, short subject, shot, silent movie, silent picture, silents, skiagram, skiagraph, skin flick, slow motion, snap, snapshot, sonogram, spectrogram, spectrograph, stereo, stereoscopic photograph, stereoscopic picture, still, still life, talkie, talking picture, tanka, telefilm, telephoto, telephotograph, three-d, time exposure, transparency, trompe l'oeil, vignette, wall painting, water-color, water-colour, watercolor, watercolour, waterscape, wedding picture

Hypernyms: conceive of, description, envisage, exemplification, graphic art, ideate, illustration, image, imagine, interpret, mental image, product, production, represent, representation, show, situation, state of affairs, typification, verbal description, visual communication

Origin of the word Picture

  1. c.1420, from L. pictura "painting," from pictus, pp. of pingere "to make pictures, to paint, to embroider," (see paint). The verb, in the mental sense, is from 1738; pictures "movies," short for moving pictures, is from 1912. Picture post-card first recorded 1899. Phrase every picture tells a story first attested 1906, in an adve… more

via Online Etymology Dictionary, ©2001 Douglas Harper

Note: If you're looking to improve your vocabulary right now, we highly recommend Ultimate Vocabulary Software.

Word of the Moment


of or relating to or resembling a series of tiles