Definition of camouflage in English:

camouflage

noun

  • 1[mass noun] The disguising of military personnel, equipment, and installations by painting or covering them to make them blend in with their surroundings:

    ‘on the trenches were pieces of turf which served for camouflage’
    • ‘New ideas are often slow to catch on in the military, and digital camouflage was one of them.’
    • ‘The use of modern combat hardware and equipment sets higher standards for camouflage, concealment, and deception.’
    • ‘The camouflage Humvees were on every corner topped by national guardsmen.’
    • ‘He was wearing military style fatigues including camouflage trousers tucked into brown boots.’
    • ‘These special camouflage nets were very specialised pieces of equipment.’
    • ‘Groups in other schools made camouflage nets, raised funds through the Red Cross and knitted for the men in the Forces.’
    • ‘By relying on camouflage, the military resort to the same artifice that enables many prey animals to enhance their chances of survival by minimizing detectability.’
    • ‘By 1918, the use of military camouflage was axiomatic, and in 1939 war artists were again mobilized to advise on concealment.’
    • ‘It's a house covered in camouflage netting so people can't see what you're doing inside.’
    • ‘Ubiquitous technologies for encryption, passive measures like camouflage, and low-tech countermeasures will see to that.’
    • ‘It managed a multitude of critical supply requirements, including desert camouflage uniforms and body armor for deploying soldiers.’
    • ‘At each test site the observers were asked to select the one camouflage uniform that blended best with the surrounding urban background.’
    • ‘Other camouflage accessories include camo tape and other items that will help hide a shotgun.’
    • ‘The need to fire 360 degrees may also limit the use of camouflage nets.’
    • ‘Jackson had since met a woman from his wilderness group and they tied the knot in camouflage military fatigues.’
    • ‘It could even replace the traditional green-and-brown camouflage splotches used on military equipment since the First World War.’
    • ‘Adding a sense of combat reality to the classroom are sandbags, camouflage netting, and the sounds of exploding ordnance and close air support.’
    • ‘Imagine the military applications of dynamic camouflage clothing.’
    • ‘It was also effective in stripping camouflage from concealed bunkers.’
    • ‘A smaller man, also wearing the military camouflage stood up from his chair.’
    disguise, concealment
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    1. 1.1 Clothing or materials used as camouflage:
      ‘figures dressed in army camouflage’
      • ‘Two giants appeared from a nearby army barracks in camouflage and studded helmets.’
      • ‘There are too many hunters with guns wearing camouflage and Red Sox hats.’
      • ‘Dressed in camouflage, gripping his .357 caliber Magnum, Demar was primed to shoot.’
      • ‘Woolrich offers both camouflage and traditional hunting clothing for turkey hunters.’
      • ‘Call me an ignorant Trinidadian, but I never knew it was against the law to wear or own any camouflage or camouflage-resembling clothing in this country.’
      • ‘She was dressed in green camouflage and waving a banner that Ford couldn't read, since it was backwards.’
      • ‘Following her was a man, also dressed in desert camouflage.’
      • ‘I realize that I'm not the most trendy person around but what is up with dressing children in camouflage?’
      • ‘The Greek soldiers clunk around set with combat boots, camouflage, and sub-machine guns.’
      • ‘The soldiers were in camouflage, with baseball caps and black backpacks, and were armed with rifles.’
      • ‘‘I am helping you,’ a man dressed in camouflage told a crying girl.’
      • ‘I squint up at the buff man dressed completely in camouflage and raise an eyebrow.’
      • ‘As a reporter, Adie was often dressed in camouflage, wrestling with the practical problems of being a woman in the world of war.’
      • ‘I took note of their dark camouflage and shiny boots.’
      • ‘Beyond choosing their clothing and helmet, they can also pick their camouflage.’
      • ‘Still, it thrills me that friends of mine are there as we speak, slogging around in the bayous, waiting, listening silently behind veils of camouflage.’
      • ‘The U.S. soldiers, dressed in Kevlar vests and desert tan camouflage, were drenched with sweat.’
      • ‘With his khaki camouflage and ID card pinned to his trousers he was indistinguishable, without closer inspection, from any soldier in the complex.’
      • ‘He dressed in green camouflage which did the job at the time.’
      • ‘Tony swapped his suit for camouflage when he tackled a gruelling Army challenge.’
    2. 1.2 The natural colouring or form of an animal which enables it to blend in with its surroundings:
      ‘the whiteness of polar bears provides camouflage’
      • ‘The trevally uses camouflage for added protection from predators.’
      • ‘There was weak support for spots in adults and stripes in young providing camouflage and for dark leg markings being a form of disruptive coloration.’
      • ‘This may have served the purpose of camouflage, making the animal more inconspicuous.’
      • ‘In nature, most markings on herd animals are intended as camouflage to protect them from being seen by predators.’
      • ‘These, in addition to its natural camouflage, discourage other organisms from feeding on it.’
      • ‘It tends to be seen sitting on barnacle-covered rocks, in only a few feet of water, where its mottled pale brown and green colouring provides excellent camouflage.’
      • ‘Natural camouflage is one of nature's most interesting traits.’
      • ‘Participants will also find out how animals use camouflage.’
      • ‘Among some ground-nesting waterbirds, such as gulls and plovers, research has shown that speckling aids egg camouflage.’
      • ‘Bitterns are virtually invisible as their plumage provides perfect camouflage.’
      • ‘Big animals don't need camouflage, because they're big - they're dangerous.’
      • ‘Thus plumage soiling not only provides instant camouflage but, unlike molting, is easily reversible.’
      • ‘In its natural environment its mottled colouring provides camouflage.’
      • ‘The patterned coats of sleeping wild dogs are easily mistaken for dead logs, elephant dung and fallen mopane leaves, providing them with perfect camouflage in their favourite habitat.’
      • ‘The natural camouflage often found on the bodies of snakes is shown through the use of painted diamonds and triangles that appear throughout the length of the body.’
      • ‘The countershading of bat rays, a form of camouflage, protects them from predators above and below.’
      • ‘The effectiveness of the female's spring camouflage is as uncanny as that of her white plumage in winter.’
      • ‘One of the most widespread and varied adaptations is natural camouflage, an animal's ability to hide itself from predator and prey.’
      • ‘This coloration, typical of many marine mammals, provides camouflage.’
      • ‘It is possible that under certain light conditions they provide camouflage.’
      protective colouring
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    3. 1.3 Actions or devices intended to disguise or mislead:
      ‘much of my apparent indifference was merely protective camouflage’
      • ‘It was the seedy part of town that hides behind a modern estate that has been cleverly built in front of it as camouflage.’
      • ‘Bara also warned that such a hasty accusation could prompt a perception among the public that it is merely camouflage for the real masterminds of the bombings.’
      • ‘The hijackers kept these accounts in their own names with no attempt at camouflage.’
      • ‘Detailed centralised supervision and inspection is a recipe for decline which official statistics merely camouflage.’
      • ‘They're complete masters of camouflage and deception.’
      facade, front, false front, smokescreen, cover-up, disguise, mask, cloak, blind, screen, masquerade, concealment, dissimulation, pretence
      View synonyms

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1 Hide or disguise the presence of (a person, animal, or object) by means of camouflage:

    ‘the caravan was camouflaged with netting and branches from trees’
    • ‘Throwing sand over the eggs and camouflaging the nest takes up another hour.’
    • ‘Coloration varies, but is normally a brownish mud-color that camouflages these fish in their natural habitats.’
    • ‘The nymphs are not as brightly colored as the adults, but are well camouflaged predators who ambush their prey.’
    • ‘But this was a semantic masterpiece in camouflaging his own feelings.’
    • ‘That one is much heavier and is doing the worse job at camouflaging its presence.’
    • ‘Carle's trademark artwork is enhanced by acetate overlays behind which the fish are camouflaged in an effect that is very beautiful.’
    • ‘He continued to grumble as he covered the boat, camouflaging it.’
    • ‘He is currently trying to discover if rumours that the Eli Lilly factory was camouflaged during World War Two are true.’
    • ‘Even if the floor covering camouflages the stain, damage still is being done.’
    • ‘Late in the afternoon, just as Barbara finishes camouflaging her last trap, we hear the yowl of another snowmobile ascending the valley.’
    • ‘I also had a tiny smudge, rather than a bruise, on the left of my forehead, which was easily camouflaged by make-up and a fringe.’
    • ‘This also defeats the purpose of camouflaging your technology.’
    • ‘The key to camouflaging your bra is to wear one that's a similar shade to your skin tone.’
    • ‘Her nakedness, though, is well camouflaged by a veil of long curly hair falling on her shoulders.’
    • ‘The students were also able to see how different marine animals defend themselves against predators through camouflaging themselves with their environment.’
    • ‘The Ghost crabs are named for their translucent bodies, and they are well camouflaged against the sand.’
    • ‘This camouflages the fact that you don't know which end of the stick is sharp.’
    • ‘During the Second World War the Lamb factory made components for war planes, and was camouflaged against enemy air attack.’
    • ‘I spent a half hour staring at a lizard that had camouflaged itself on some bark.’
    • ‘Any small triplefin that ventured too close to these camouflaged predators met a quick end in their cavernous mouths.’
    disguise, hide, conceal, keep hidden, mask, screen, veil, cloak, cover, cover up, obscure, shroud
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Conceal the existence of (something undesirable):
      ‘grievances should be discussed, not camouflaged’
      • ‘Lumping all transition economies into the same academic pot has camouflaged important differences.’
      • ‘Because the poverty was somewhat camouflaged by the tropical climate, metropolitan visitors tended to disregard it.’
      • ‘However, the official statistics only serve to camouflage the real death toll, which some unofficial estimates put at almost twice the reported level.’
      • ‘Her gift for profanity does not a thing to camouflage her upper-class upbringing.’
      • ‘Of course, the administration deserves to be criticized for its crude attempts to camouflage the painful reality of the occupation.’
      • ‘His classy batting can camouflage tardiness in the field.’
      • ‘The difficulty of replacing him, camouflaged by the successful run at home, has undermined his side's European travels.’
      • ‘My personal skill was camouflaging my abilities with a deficiency.’
      • ‘He managed to stay out of the gutter, his contempt of the frailties of his colleagues barely camouflaged.’
      • ‘He attempts to camouflage these holes with unproven conjecture.’
      • ‘And however much he tried to camouflage his words, time is not on his side to turn things round.’
      • ‘He camouflaged his fundamentally conservative policies in liberalish rhetoric.’
      • ‘These profit pressures were camouflaged during the 1990s stock market boom, which largely collapsed at the end of the decade.’
      • ‘The red card debate, or rather lack of one, couldn't camouflage the austere dinginess that had preceded it.’
      • ‘Last season, Celtic's tendency to leak goals, particularly on their travels, was at least camouflaged by the fact that they were scoring them.’
      • ‘Drinking is commonplace in our culture, so you shouldn't find it hard to camouflage the limits of your infatuation.’
      • ‘This willingness to see formally accomplished prose as a means to camouflage empty thought is disconcerting.’
      • ‘He has also claimed that children with severe dental problems are also being removed from waiting lists to camouflage the extent of the problem.’
      • ‘That's just another way of saying they'll camouflage their failure to generate sales behind an intellectual smoke screen.’
      • ‘Tapes, no matter how well-produced, are a fake, and in many cases are used to camouflage the inadequacies of those performing to them.’

Origin

Late 19th century (in sense ‘disguise, concealment’): French, from camoufler to disguise (originally thieves' slang), from Italian camuffare disguise, deceive, perhaps by association with French camouflet whiff of smoke in the face. The military sense originated during the First World War.

Pronunciation:

camouflage

/ˈkaməflɑːʒ/