picture

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English[edit]

A picture by Pere Borrell del Caso

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English pycture, from Old French picture, from Latin pictūra (the art of painting, a painting), from pingō (I paint).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

picture (plural pictures)

  1. A representation of anything (as a person, a landscape, a building) upon canvas, paper, or other surface, by drawing, painting, printing, photography, etc.
    • 1879, R[ichard] J[efferies], chapter II, in The Amateur Poacher, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., [], OCLC 752825175, page 071:
      Orion hit a rabbit once; but though sore wounded it got to the bury, and, struggling in, the arrow caught the side of the hole and was drawn out. []. Ikey the blacksmith had forged us a spearhead after a sketch from a picture of a Greek warrior; and a rake-handle served as a shaft.
    • 2012 March 1, Brian Hayes, “Pixels or Perish”, in American Scientist, volume 100, number 2, page 106:
      Drawings and pictures are more than mere ornaments in scientific discourse. Blackboard sketches, geological maps, diagrams of molecular structure, astronomical photographs, MRI images, the many varieties of statistical charts and graphs: These pictorial devices are indispensable tools for presenting evidence, for explaining a theory, for telling a story.
  2. An image; a representation as in the imagination.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Samuel Taylor Coleridge
      My eyes make pictures when they are shut.
    • 1908, W[illiam] B[lair] M[orton] Ferguson, chapter IV, in Zollenstein, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 731476803:
      So this was my future home, I thought! Certainly it made a brave picture. I had seen similar ones fired-in on many a Heidelberg stein. Backed by towering hills, [] a sky of palest Gobelin flecked with fat, fleecy little clouds, it in truth looked a dear little city; the city of one's dreams.
    • 2007, The Workers' Republic
      Prior to seeing him and meeting him, and hearing him speak, I had conjured up a picture of him in my mind, which actual contact with him proved to be an illusion. I had conceived of him [] as being tall, commanding, and as the advance notices of him, a sliver-tongued orator. I found him, however, to be the opposite of my mental picture; short, squat, unpretentious [].
  3. A painting.
    There was a picture hanging above the fireplace.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 3, in The China Governess[1]:
      Here the stripped panelling was warmly gold and the pictures, mostly of the English school, were mellow and gentle in the afternoon light.
  4. A photograph.
    I took a picture of the church.
  5. (informal) A motion picture.
    Casablanca is my all-time favorite picture.
  6. (in the plural, informal) ("the pictures") Cinema (as a form of entertainment).
    Let's go to the pictures.
  7. A paragon, a perfect example or specimen (of a category).
    She's the very picture of health.
  8. An attractive sight.
    The garden is a real picture at this time of year.
    • 2018 January 1, Donald McRae, “The Guardian footballer of the year 2017: Juan Mata”, in the Guardian[2]:
      I went to the opening of the photographic exhibition Mata and his girlfriend held at the National Football Museum – and surrounded by photographs they had taken in Mumbai it was heartening to see a young Indian football team Mata had invited to Manchester. His face was a picture when he listened to the little footballers sing a team song for him.
  9. The art of painting; representation by painting.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Sir Henry Wotton
      any well-expressed image [] either in picture or sculpture
  10. A figure; a model.
    • (Can we date this quote?) James Howell
      the young king's picture [] in virgin wax
  11. Situation.
    The employment picture for the older middle class is not so good.
    You can't just look at the election, you've got to look at the big picture.

Synonyms[edit]

  • (representation as in the imagination): image

Hyponyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Verb[edit]

picture (third-person singular simple present pictures, present participle picturing, simple past and past participle pictured)

  1. (transitive) To represent in or with a picture.
    • 1966, Margaret Naumburg, Dynamically oriented art therapy, page 154:
      What is striking about the self portrait is that the patient had pictured herself as a much younger woman
    • 1962, Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov, Pale Fire, page 130:
      while upon the shaded top of the box, drawn in perspective, the artist had pictured a plate with the beautifully executed, twin-lobed, brainlike, halved kernel of a walnut.
    • 1999, Lisa Gitelman, Scripts, grooves, and writing machines, page 107:
      Anyone "skilled in the art" could see from their language that Lemp and Wightman had not invented or patented the invention their draftsman had pictured.
  2. (transitive) To imagine or envision.
  3. (transitive) To depict.
    • 1898, Arthur Conan Doyle, The Man with the Watches
      I had never found him so impossible to soften or to move. I tried this way and I tried that; I pictured his future in an English gaol; I described the sorrow of his mother when I came back with the news; I said everything to touch his heart, but all to no purpose.
    • 1985, Edmund Burke Feldman, Thinking about art, page 252:
      Drawing is picturing people, places, and things with line.
    • 1989, Jan Jelínek, The great art of the early Australians, page 490:
      Many rock paintings picture various species of fish.
    • 2003, Jack Shadoian, Dreams and Dead Ends: The American Gangster Film (page 196)
      A plain, seemingly graceless stylist, his rather unpalatable movies, full of rabid, sloggingly orchestrated physical pain and psychic damage, picture crime as a monstrous, miasmal evil, divesting it of any glamour it ever had.
    • 2004, Helen South, The everything drawing book, page 75:
      The sketch pictured here takes in the whole scene.

Translations[edit]

Related terms[edit]

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See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


Latin[edit]

Participle[edit]

pictūre

  1. vocative masculine singular of pictūrus

Norman[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French picture, from Latin pictūra (the art of painting, a painting), from pingō, pingere (paint; decorate, embellish), from Proto-Indo-European *peyḱ- (spot, color).

Noun[edit]

picture f (plural pictures)

  1. (Guernsey) picture