This paper presents a fuzzy-neural approach for interpretation and fusion of colour and texture features for CBIR systems. The presented approach uses fuzzy logic to interpret queries expressed in natural language such as mostly red, many green, few red for colour feature. Tamura feature is used to represent the texture of an image in the database. A term set on each Tamura feature is generated using a fuzzy clustering algorithm to pose a query in terms of natural language. The query can be expressed as a logic combination of natural language terms and Tamura feature values. A fusion of multiple queries is incorporated into the proposed approach. The performance of the technique was evaluated on Brodatz texture benchmark database and it was noticed that there was a prominent increase in the confidence factor for the images. Fusion experiments were conducted using neuro-fuzzy, fuzzy AND and binary AND techniques. A comparative analysis showed that fuzzy-neural approach has significantly improved the performance of CBIR system. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.