camouflage

To camouflage is to disguise, and a camouflage is that which disguises — like the leaf-colored and patterned uniforms worn by soldiers who want to blend in with their natural surroundings.

Camouflage evolved from the French camoufler, which was slang for “to disguise.” Camoufler itself most likely comes from camouflet, meaning “puff of smoke” — a puff of smoke that makes it hard to see things. Camouflaged clothing certainly hides hunters from their prey, but the word can also be used in a more figurative sense, as in camouflaging criticism by veiling it as a backhanded compliment.

Definitions of camouflage
  1. noun
    an outward semblance that misrepresents the true nature of something
    synonyms: disguise
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    type of:
    color, colour, gloss, semblance, veneer
    an outward or token appearance or form that is deliberately misleading
  2. noun
    the act of concealing the identity of something by modifying its appearance
    synonyms: disguise
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    type of:
    concealing, concealment, hiding
    the activity of keeping something secret
  3. noun
    device or stratagem for concealment or deceit
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    type of:
    concealment, cover, covert, screen
    a covering that serves to conceal or shelter something
  4. noun
    fabric dyed with splotches of green and brown and black and tan; intended to make the wearer of a garment made of this fabric hard to distinguish from the background
    synonyms: camo
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    type of:
    cloth, fabric, material, textile
    artifact made by weaving or felting or knitting or crocheting natural or synthetic fibers
  5. verb
    disguise by camouflaging; exploit the natural surroundings to disguise something
    “The troops camouflaged themselves before they went into enemy territory”
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    type of:
    disguise, mask
    make unrecognizable
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