"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[kroh-mat-ik, kruh-] /kroʊˈmæt ɪk, krə-/
pertaining to color or colors.
  1. involving a modification of the normal scale by the use of accidentals.
  2. progressing by semitones, especially to a tone having the same letter name, as in C to C sharp.
Origin of chromatic
1590-1600; < Greek chrōmatikós, equivalent to chrōmat- (see chromato-) + -ikos -ic
Related forms
chromatically, adverb
nonchromatic, adjective
nonchromatically, adverb
unchromatic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for chromatic
  • Its principal motif is the chromatic scale, or half-steps that rise and fall.
  • As he matured, his language became increasingly complex and chromatic.
  • Thick, astringent chromatic harmonies come in tightly bound chords to create nervous sonorities.
  • But a large audience turned up to bask in the music's hazy, chromatic glow.
  • Shaw did not, for instance, heavily stress the chromatic confusions and unresolved chords in the opening.
  • The use of oil combined with tempera creates a stunning chromatic effect.
  • chromatic recurrence was one way he bound the series together.
  • But researchers using imaging techniques show us a much more chromatic view.
  • Eggleston's receptiveness to chromatic profusion extends to a sense of space that spills beyond the limits of the framing edge.
  • She was a natural-witness the chromatic inventiveness of several landscape gouaches that she painted in art school.
British Dictionary definitions for chromatic


of, relating to, or characterized by a colour or colours
  1. involving the sharpening or flattening of notes or the use of such notes in chords and harmonic progressions
  2. of or relating to the chromatic scale or an instrument capable of producing it: a chromatic harmonica
  3. of or relating to chromaticism Compare diatonic
Derived Forms
chromatically, adverb
chromaticism, noun
Word Origin
C17: from Greek khrōmatikos, from khrōma colour
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for chromatic

1590s (of music), "progressing by half-tones;" 1831 as "pertaining to color," from Latin chromaticus, from Greek khromatikos "relating to color, suited for color," from khroma (genitive khromatos) "color, complexion, character," but chiefly used metaphorically of embellishments in music, originally "skin, surface" (see chroma).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
chromatic in Medicine

chromatic chro·mat·ic (krō-māt'ĭk)

  1. Relating to color or colors.

  2. Produced by or made in a color or colors.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
chromatic in Science
Relating to color or colors.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for chromatic

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for chromatic

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with chromatic

Nearby words for chromatic