verb (used with object), mottled, mottling.
to mark or diversify with spots or blotches of a different color or shade.
a diversifying spot or blotch of color.
mottled coloring or pattern.

1670–80; probably back formation from motley

mottlement, noun
mottler, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
mottle (ˈmɒtəl)
1.  (tr) to colour with streaks or blotches of different shades
2.  a mottled appearance, as of the surface of marble
3.  one streak or blotch of colour in a mottled surface
[C17: back formation from motley]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1670s, probably a back formation from motley. Related: Mottling.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
If the biblical references are to a literal skin-mottling disease, some commentators find smallpox a more likely candidate.
The mottling on this sea star is fairly distinctive.
Depth to mottling tends to underestimate the maximum height of the water table.
The ventral surface is opaque cream-colored or yellow with coppery pigmentation and dark green mottling on the throat.
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