\ ˈbliŋk How to pronounce blink (audio) \
blinked; blinking; blinks

Definition of blink

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a obsolete : to look glancingly : peep
b : to look with half-shut eyes
c : to close and open the eyes involuntarily
2 : to shine dimly or intermittently
3a : to look with too little concern
b : to look with surprise or dismay
4 : yield, give in each side waiting for the other to blink

transitive verb

1a : to cause to blink
b : to remove (something, such as tears) from the eye by blinking
2 : to deny recognition to



Definition of blink (Entry 2 of 2)

1 chiefly Scotland : glimpse, glance
3 : a usually involuntary shutting and opening of the eye
4 : iceblink
in the blink of an eye
: in an instant
on the blink
: in or into a disabled or useless condition the TV is on the blink

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Synonyms for blink

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of blink in a Sentence

Verb She blinked when the light flashed. Her eyes blinked when the light flashed. She blinked her eyes when the light flashed.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Ride attraction by adding a 22-foot-tall Indominus dinosaur that can blink her eyes, flex her arms and claws and clench her jaw. Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times, "Universal Studios Hollywood to reopen April 16 with new attraction," 30 Mar. 2021 During May and June every summer, watch a spectacular firefly synchronization, where hundreds of Phontinus frontalis blink in unison as part of their mating ritual. Sucheta Rawal, Travel + Leisure, "The Best Places to Spot Wildlife in South Carolina," 26 Feb. 2021 Also, be sure to blink when focusing and close your eyes every few moments to give them a break, too. Marc Saltzman, USA TODAY, "Is working from home a literal pain? These ergonomic setups and healthy habits can help," 18 Apr. 2021 Each had no-hitters after six innings when Burnes became the first to blink. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Twins 2, Brewers 0: From the ecstasy of opening walk-off victory to agony of collecting only one hit," 3 Apr. 2021 Leave it unlocked with the lever pointing towards the machine. Press and hold the button for approximately seven seconds until the light begins to blink. Tamara Gane, Southern Living, "How to Clean a Nespresso Machine," 9 Apr. 2021 The aggressively hostile jump scares elicit few jolts as the attire of practical and graphics-generated effects blink too overtly for notice, only to quickly dissipate once seen. Robert Daniels, Los Angeles Times, "Review: The gothic terror and limited scares of ‘The Unholy’ bog down in tired tropes," 1 Apr. 2021 One year on, as other parts of the economy blink back to life, the U.S. cruise industry is waiting anxiously for Washington’s go-ahead to sail again—and worried that a second summer season is about to be lost. Julie Bykowicz, WSJ, "Cruise Lines Fear Another Lost Summer," 22 Mar. 2021 Now the entire Democratic Party has signed on to a package several times that size, and no one seemed to blink. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "Larry Summers Versus the Stimulus," 18 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Two seemingly perfect all-American families who had their lives upended in the blink of an eye. Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, "'This Close to Okay' Is a Reminder That It's Alright to Struggle," 1 Apr. 2021 The blaze that hop-scotched from palm trees to barns in a blink claimed 46 horses as Lovely Finish narrowly avoided becoming No. 47. Bryce Miller Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Heartwarming horse-racing finish arrives for Joe Herrick, Lovely Finish," 24 Mar. 2021 There’s an occasional moodiness to the point guard’s game, flipping from joyous focus to disjointed funk in a blink. Nick Moyle, San Antonio Express-News, "Texas' Matt Coleman, Shaka Smart hope long journey ends in Final Four run," 17 Mar. 2021 In the last five minutes, the Salukis went from up six to down five in the blink of an eye. Matthew Glenesk, The Indianapolis Star, "There have been 97 NCAA tournament games in Indianapolis since 1940. We rank them all.," 13 Mar. 2021 Many people ride this circuit — without truck support — in three days, some in two and a select few in a blink. John Briley, Washington Post, "On mountain bikes in the Utah desert, a college reunion like no other," 20 Nov. 2020 Just as in many aspects of our uncertain lives, things can change in a blink. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Parents relish chance to watch Aztecs football play for first time in 2020 at Utah State," 29 Oct. 2020 The America that Donald Trump described in his debate with Joe Biden last Thursday night is a strangely destructible place—one that might, in a blink, disappear. Amy Davidson Sorkin, The New Yorker, "Trump’s Bitter, Vainglorious Fantasy of America on the Debate Stage," 25 Oct. 2020 Two turnovers by Kirk Cousins — a fumble and an interception – and that 13-0 lead turned into a 21-13 deficit in a blink. Star Tribune, "Vikings can't convert fourth down and the rest is history," 11 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'blink.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of blink


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


1578, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for blink


Middle English, to open one's eyes

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Time Traveler for blink

Time Traveler

The first known use of blink was in the 14th century

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Statistics for blink

Last Updated

24 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Blink.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for blink



English Language Learners Definition of blink

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to close and then open your eyes very quickly
: to shine with a light that goes on and off
: to show that you are surprised or upset



English Language Learners Definition of blink (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of closing and then opening your eyes very quickly : the act of blinking


\ ˈbliŋk How to pronounce blink (audio) \
blinked; blinking

Kids Definition of blink

1 : to shut and open the eyes quickly
2 : to shine with a light that goes or seems to go on and off lights blinking
\ ˈbliŋk How to pronounce blink (audio) \

Medical Definition of blink

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to close and open the eyes involuntarily (as when struggling against drowsiness or when dazzled)

transitive verb

1 : to close and open (the eye) involuntarily
2 : to remove (as tears) from the eye by blinking



Medical Definition of blink (Entry 2 of 2)

: a usually involuntary shutting and opening of the eye

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More from Merriam-Webster on blink

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for blink

Nglish: Translation of blink for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of blink for Arabic Speakers

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