A still-life painting; still life as a genre. Also figurative and in extended use: a person or painting lacking vitality.
Characteristic of or relating to a nature morte, or to the creation of such a painting. Also figurative and in extended use: sickly; lifeless.
Late 19th century; earliest use found in Scribner's Monthly. From French nature morte still life as subject in painting, a still-life painting from nature + morte, feminine of mort (adjective) dead.