Definition of subtle adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

subtle

adjective
ˈsʌtl
 
; ˈsʌtl
 
subtler, subtlest
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more subtle is also common
 
1 (often approving) not very noticeable or obvioussubtle colours/flavours/smells, etc.There are subtle differences between the two versions.The fragrance is a subtle blend of jasmine and sandalwood.She's been dropping subtle hints about what she'd like as a present.2 (of a person or their behaviour) behaving in a clever way, and using indirect methods, in order to achieve somethingI decided to try a more subtle approach.3 organized in a clever waya subtle plana subtle use of lighting in the play4 good at noticing and understanding thingsThe job required a subtle mind.subtly
ˈsʌtli
 
; ˈsʌtli
 
adverbHer version of events is subtly different from what actually happened.Not very subtly, he raised the subject of money.Government policy has already shifted subtly.