dapple

To dapple is to dot with blotches of color or light, the way sunlight dapples the leaves of trees in the summertime.

You can use dapple as a verb or a noun: "I saw a dapple of yellow paint on the floor after I finished painting my bedroom wall." Writers often describe the way sunshine and moonlight dapple things, forming irregular spots and patches. Sometimes animal fur or skin is described as dappled, or a color such as dapple-gray, an adjective which—strangely enough—was originally apple-gray.

Definitions of dapple
  1. noun
    a small contrasting part of something
    synonyms: fleck, maculation, patch, speckle, spot
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    types:
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    pinpoint, speck
    a very small spot
    nebula
    (pathology) a faint cloudy spot on the cornea
    splash
    a patch of bright color
    fret, worn spot
    a spot that has been worn away by abrasion or erosion
    plaque
    (pathology) a small abnormal patch on or inside the body
    macula, macule
    a patch of skin that is discolored but not usually elevated; caused by various diseases
    mock sun, parhelion, sundog
    a bright spot on the parhelic circle; caused by diffraction by ice crystals
    macula, sunspot
    a cooler darker spot appearing periodically on the sun's photosphere; associated with a strong magnetic field
    facula
    a large bright spot on the sun's photosphere occurring most frequently in the vicinity of sunspots
    facula
    a bright spot on a planet
    amyloid plaque, amyloid protein plaque
    a plaque consisting of tangles of amyloid protein in nervous tissue (a pathological mark of Alzheimer's disease)
    arterial plaque
    a fatty deposit inside an arterial wall; characteristic of atherosclerosis
    bacterial plaque, dental plaque
    a film of mucus and bacteria deposited on the teeth that encourages the development of dental caries
    freckle, lentigo
    a small brownish spot (of the pigment melanin) on the skin
    liver spot
    a type of skin disease that causes brown spots on the skin
    plague spot
    a spot on the skin characteristic of the plague
    type of:
    marking
    a pattern of marks
  2. verb
    color with streaks or blotches of different shades
    synonyms: cloud, mottle
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    types:
    harlequin
    variegate with spots or marks
    speckle, stipple
    produce a mottled effect
    type of:
    spot
    mark with a spot or spots so as to allow easy recognition
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