- paint applied by American Indians to their faces and bodies before going to war.
- Informal. makeup; cosmetics.
- Informal. full dress; regalia.
Origin of war paint
An Americanism dating back to 1820–30
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for war paint
They are in my chamber, together with the feathers and war-paint and the other things.Daughters of the Revolution and Their Times
Charles Carleton Coffin
Many of them were known to Chalmers as savages in feathers and war-paint.A Handful of Stars
Frank W. Boreham
The tonsure of his hair, the cut of his moccasins, his war-paint, enabled Carlos to tell this.The White Chief
He was a savage, in the war-paint and panoply of a Blackfoot brave.The Prairie Chief
They were not made hideous by war-paint, as Jack Cockrell was quick to note.Blackbeard: Buccaneer
Ralph D. Paine
- painted decoration of the face and body applied by certain North American Indians before battle
- informal finery or regalia
- informal cosmetics
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012