contrast[kən trast′; for n. kän′trast′]
Striking contrast between the clouds and the clear blue sky.
- The definition of contrast is the difference between two objects, people or places.
An example of contrast is thunder storms on one end of an island and clear, blue skies on the other end.
- Contrast means to compare in order to show differences.
An example of contrast is to explain the differences between the causes of World War I and World War II.
Origin of contrastFrench contraster ; from Italian and amp; Vulgar Latin an unverified form contrastare, to withstand ; from Classical Latin contra, against + stare, to stand
- a contrasting or being contrasted
- a difference, esp. a striking difference, between things being compared
- a person or thing showing differences when compared with another
- the effect of a striking difference, as in color or tone, of adjacent parts of a painting, photograph, video-screen image, etc.
verbcon·trast·ed, con·trast·ing, con·trasts
- To show differences when compared: siblings who contrast sharply in interests and abilities; a color that contrasted clearly with the dark background.
- Linguistics To evince a difference that can distinguish meaning: Voiced and voiceless stops contrast in English but not in Cree.
- a. The act of contrasting; a setting off of dissimilar entities or objects.b. The state of being contrasted: red berries standing in vivid contrast against the snow.
- A difference, especially a strong dissimilarity, between entities or objects compared: the contrast between Northern and Southern speech patterns.
- One thing that is strikingly dissimilar to another: My new school was a welcome contrast to the one before.
- The use of opposing elements, such as colors, forms, or lines, in proximity to produce an intensified effect in a work of art.
- The difference in brightness between the light and dark areas of a picture, such as a photograph or video image.
- Linguistics A difference between units, especially one that distinguishes meaning.
Origin of contrastFrench contraster, from Italian contrastare, from Medieval Latin contrāstāre : Latin contrā-, contra- + Latin stāre, to stand; see stā- in Indo-European roots.
(countable and uncountable, plural contrasts)
- (countable) A difference in lightness, brightness and/or hue between two colours that makes them more or less distinguishable.
- (uncountable) The degree of this difference.
- The red and the orange don't have much contrast between them — I can hardly tell them apart.
- (countable) A difference between two objects, people or concepts.
- Israel is a country of many contrasts.
- (countable) A control on a television, etc, that adjusts the amount of contrast in the images being displayed.
- (countable, uncountable, rhetoric) Antithesis.
(third-person singular simple present contrasts, present participle contrasting, simple past and past participle contrasted)
- To set in opposition in order to show the difference or differences between.
- (intransitive) To form a contrast.
- Foreground and background strongly contrast.