adjective Date: 1609 1. performed with or showing art or skill <
an artful performance on the violin
2. a. using or characterized by art and skill ; dexterous <
an artful prose stylist
b. adroit in attaining an end usually by insinuating or indirect means ; wily <
an artful cross-examiner
3. artificial <
trim walks and artful bowers — William Wordsworth
Synonyms: see slyartfully adverbartfulness noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Artful — Art ful, a. [From {Art}.] 1. Performed with, or characterized by, art or skill. [Archaic] Artful strains. Artful terms. Milton. [1913 Webster] 2. Artificial; imitative. Addison. [1913 Webster] 3. Using or exhibiting much art, skill, or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • artful — [ärt′fəl] adj. 1. skillful or clever, esp. in achieving a purpose 2. sly or cunning; crafty [an artful swindle] 3. done with, using, or showing much art or skill 4. artificial; imitative artfully adv. artfulness n …   English World dictionary

  • artful — I adjective able, acute, adept, adroit, apt, artistic, astute, astutus, aware, calculating, callidus, canny, capable, characterized by art, clever, contriving, crafty, cunning, deft, devious, dexterous, done with skill, experienced, facile,… …   Law dictionary

  • artful — (adj.) 1610s, learned, well versed in the (liberal) arts, also characterized by technical skill, from ART (Cf. art) (n.) + FUL (Cf. ful). Meaning skilled in adapting means to ends is from 1739. Related: Artfully; artfulness …   Etymology dictionary

  • artful — wily, guileful, crafty, cunning, tricky, *sly, foxy, insidious Analogous words: adroit, *dexterous: politic, diplomatic, smooth, *suave Antonyms: artless Contrasted words: simple, *natural, ingenuous, unsophisticated, naive: candid, open, * …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • artful — [adj] skillful; cunning adept, adroit, clever, crafty, designing, dexterous, foxy*, ingenious, masterly, politic, proficient, resourceful, scheming, sharp, shrewd, slick*, sly, smart, smooth*, tricky, wily; concepts 404,528 Ant. artless,… …   New thesaurus

  • artful — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ cunningly clever. DERIVATIVES artfully adverb artfulness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • artful — [[t]ɑ͟ː(r)tfʊl[/t]] 1) ADJ GRADED: usu ADJ n If you describe someone as artful, you mean that they are clever and skilful at achieving what they want, especially by deceiving people. ...the smiles and artifices of a subtle artful woman... Some… …   English dictionary

  • artful — artfully, adv. artfulness, n. /ahrt feuhl/, adj. 1. slyly crafty or cunning; deceitful; tricky: artful schemes. 2. skillful or clever in adapting means to ends; ingenious: an artful choice of metaphors and similes. 3. done with or characterized… …   Universalium

  • artful — art|ful [ˈa:tfəl US ˈa:rt ] adj 1.) clever at deceiving people = ↑cunning ▪ artful tricks 2.) designed or done in a clever and attractive way ▪ artful photographs >artfully adj ▪ artfully concealed pockets >artfulness n …   Dictionary of contemporary English

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