bright·​ness | \ ˈbrīt-nəs How to pronounce brightness (audio) \

Definition of brightness

1a : the quality or state of being bright also : an instance of such a quality or state
2 : the attribute of light-source colors by which emitted light is ordered continuously from light to dark in correlation with its intensity — compare hue sense 2c, lightness entry 1 sense 2, saturation sense 4

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Examples of brightness in a Sentence

the brightness of the sunshine made me squint after an afternoon spent in a darkened movie theater
Recent Examples on the Web Looking directly at the powerful brightness of the sun can cause damage to the retina, the light-sensitive part of the eye. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Total solar eclipse moves across South America today," 2 July 2019 Our review unit came with a more conservative panel: a 14-inch, FHD, non-touch, low-power panel that reaches up to 400 nits of brightness. Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica, "ThinkPad X1 Carbon 7th-gen mini-review: Minor updates made to a stellar machine," 13 Sep. 2019 And then, some surprises: flashes of brightness from lightning strikes within the hurricane. Justin Lear, CNN, "There's lightning inside Hurricane Dorian. It's not an optical illusion," 30 Aug. 2019 And then, some surprises: flashes of brightness from lightning strikes within the hurricane. Wire Service, The Mercury News, "Watch: Lightning inside Hurricane Dorian, now Category 3," 30 Aug. 2019 The deliberately placed spots of brightness — a purple trash can here, a green chair there — are reminders that the space serves a purpose beyond sewing, though sewing still happens in abundance. Nicole Blackwood,, "Tailor shop Uncommon Closet stitches community together, affirming and catering to queer clientele," 15 Aug. 2019 Now that the sun is setting on all that, the pink moment feels consolatory, a wistful look from the end of the dock, the last flash of brightness before dark. Dana Goodyear, The New Yorker, "Rosé Berries Have Arrived," 11 Aug. 2019 There was a lot of earnestness and different kinds of brightness. Peggy Noonan, WSJ, "The 2020 Democrats Lack Hindsight," 28 June 2019 Called the Pro Display XDR, this display comes with 1000 nits of brightness and comes with 6K HDR resolution. Daisy Hernandez, Popular Mechanics, "Everything You Need To Know From Apple's WWDC Keynote," 3 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'brightness.' 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 brightness

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for brightness

Last Updated

26 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for brightness

The first known use of brightness was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for brightness


bright·​ness | \ ˈbrīt-nəs How to pronounce brightness (audio) \

Medical Definition of brightness

: the one of the three psychological dimensions of color perception by which visual stimuli are ordered continuously from light to dark and which is correlated with light intensity — compare hue, saturation sense 4a

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