[pawr-trey, pohr-]
verb (used with object)
to make a likeness of by drawing, painting, carving, or the like.
to depict in words; describe graphically.
to represent dramatically, as on the stage: He portrayed Napoleon in the play.

1300–50; Middle English portrayen < Middle French portraire < Late Latin prōtrahere to depict, Latin: to draw forth, equivalent to prō- pro-1 + trahere to draw

portrayable, adjective
portrayer, noun
nonportrayable, adjective
preportray, verb (used with object)
unportrayable, adjective
unportrayed, adjective

1, 2. picture, delineate, limn. See depict.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
portray (pɔːˈtreɪ)
1.  to represent in a painting, drawing, sculpture, etc; make a portrait of
2.  to make a verbal picture of; depict in words
3.  to play the part of (a character) in a play or film
[C14: from Old French portraire to depict, from Latin prōtrahere to drag forth, bring to light, from pro-1 + trahere to drag]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

c.1300, from Anglo-Fr. purtraire, O.Fr. portraire "to draw, to paint, portray" (12c.), lit. "trace, draw forth," from por- "forth" (from L. pro-) + traire "trace, draw," from L. trahere "to drag, draw" (see tract (1)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Though he often dwells on his own character, Hamsun skillfully uses mannerisms
  to portray character generally.
Even religious texts portray both a loving and wrathful god and we use our
  conscience to decide which to follow.
But the style of portraying low-class character is full of interest.
But the media, at any rate, portray it as a point of national pride and as a
  huge stimulus to the economy and employment.
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