Date: 1500-1600
Language: French
Origin: Italian pastello, from Late Latin pasta; PASTE1


1 noun
a) [uncountable and countable]AV a small coloured stick for drawing pictures with, made of a substance like chalk
b) [countable]AV a picture drawn with pastels
2 [countable usually plural]CC a light colour such as pale blue or pink:
a room beautifully furnished in soft pastels
WORD FOCUS: colour WORD FOCUS: colour
a particular kind of colour: shade, hint, hue

words for describing dark colours: dark, deep, rich

words for describing light colours: light, pale, soft, pastel

words for describing bright colours: bright, brilliant, vivid, garish disapproving, gaudy disapproving

having a lot of colours: colourful, multicoloured British English/multicolored American English

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