Word of the Day: variegated

Variegated leaves of a Coleus
Source: unknown

Word of the Day: variegated

(adjective) VAIR-ee-uh-gay-tud


1 : having discrete markings of different colors

2 : various, diverse, varied


The flower has bright variegated petals.

“Everyone of significance in the region has multiple agendas and variegated geopolitical interests.” — Robert Robb, The Arizona Republic, 21 Aug. 2016

Did You Know?

Variegated has been adding color to our language since the 17th century. It is used in botany to describe the presence of two or more colors in the leaves, petals, or other parts of plants, and it also appears in the names of some animals (such as the variegated cutworm). It can be used by the general speaker to refer to anything marked with different colors (“a variegated silk robe,” for instance) or to things that are simply various and diverse (“a variegated collection”). Variegated has a variety of relatives in English—it is ultimately derived from the Latin root varius, meaning “varied,” which also gave us vary, various, and variety.

My Take

Variegated is another word that I know very well. I learned it decades ago with my parents garden. We had all sorts of variegated varieties, including Hosta, one of my favorites.

In researching this word, it suddenly occurred to me that I could use the term in a number of different ways, for in a number of different subjects, such as animals (the vast variety of people comes to mind), people (race, nationality, sex, social groups, and subsets such as tattoo fans), plants, well, the picture in the post and my earlier comment affirms that.

I recommend that you think about the word and come up with your own interpretations. I have added one to this post, but in order to see it, you will need to share the post on Twitter using one of the Twitter buttons on this page.

Please share your comments. I’m sure we would all enjoy reading them.

If you share this post by clicking one of the twitter buttons, I will treat you with a sexier image related to the word. My gift to you.

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