brilliant

adjective
bril·​liant | \ ˈbril-yənt How to pronounce brilliant (audio) \

Definition of brilliant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : very bright : glittering a brilliant light
2a : striking, distinctive a brilliant example
b : distinguished by unusual mental keenness or alertness brilliant scientists
3 British : very good : excellent

brilliant

noun

Definition of brilliant (Entry 2 of 2)

: a gem (such as a diamond) cut in a particular form with numerous facets so as to have special brightness or brilliance

Illustration of brilliant

Illustration of brilliant

Noun

brilliant, top and side view: 1 table, 2 bezel, 3 girdle, 4 pavilion, 5 culet

In the meaning defined above

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Other Words from brilliant

Adjective

brilliantly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for brilliant

Adjective

bright, brilliant, radiant, luminous, lustrous mean shining or glowing with light. bright implies emitting or reflecting a high degree of light. brilliant implies intense often sparkling brightness. radiant stresses the emission or seeming emission of rays of light. luminous implies emission of steady, suffused, glowing light by reflection or in surrounding darkness. lustrous stresses an even, rich light from a surface that reflects brightly without glittering.

Examples of brilliant in a Sentence

Adjective a brilliant star in the sky a store decorated in brilliant colors He pitched a brilliant game. She gave a brilliant performance. She has a brilliant mind. Noun the diamond cutter set out an array of brilliants to show the various ways the diamond could be cut
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Running nearly three weeks late because of an electrical issue, the booster blasted off at 9:36 a.m. EDT, climbing away atop a brilliant jet of flame. William Harwood, CBS News, "Bezos' Blue Origin launches unpiloted New Shepard capsule to edge of space," 13 Oct. 2020 This precise thinker, riveting speaker, and fierce champion of civil rights is the daughter of a brilliant and exacting father. Melissa Harris Perry, Glamour, "Sherrilyn Ifill, Civil Rights Superhero," 13 Oct. 2020 Harvard Law School professor James Bradley Thayer offered a brilliant democratic solution to this dilemma, one that defined the first half of the twentieth century. Ryan D. Doerfler, The New Republic, "Making the Supreme Court Safe for Democracy," 13 Oct. 2020 No player was more brilliant than James, who, at age 35, was named the finals’ most valuable player for the fourth time in his career. Scott Cacciola, New York Times, "The Lakers’ Winding Path Ends With a Championship," 11 Oct. 2020 And speaking of a #BurrFriend, we are joined tonight by former SNL cast member Jeff Richards, who recently launched a brilliant podcast, The Jeff Richards Show. Andy Hoglund, EW.com, "Saturday Night Live recap: Bill Burr hosts, with replacement musical guest Jack White," 11 Oct. 2020 Speaking of angels, anyone else see the stunning photograph of brilliant light bars outside the door of the hospital room of a disabled 14-year-old girl who wasn't expected to survive the night? Mike Masterson, Arkansas Online, "OPINION | MASTERSON ONLINE: When God nods," 11 Oct. 2020 Intelligent, sweet, brilliant, and loving, Ms. Jessel was the woman who cared for Miles and Flora before Dani. Rosie Knight, refinery29.com, "What’s Really Going On With The Ghosts Of Bly Manor," 10 Oct. 2020 There also are brilliant moments by other actors describing realizations stemming from the lowest points in their lives — and missing the booze and highs. Will Coviello, NOLA.com, "Willem Dafoe is a troubled filmmaker trying to get his life together in Abel Ferrara's 'Tommaso'," 9 Oct. 2020

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

Adjective

circa 1681, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1690, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for brilliant

Adjective

French brillant, present participle of briller to shine, from Italian brillare

Noun

borrowed from French brillant, noun derivative of brillant brilliant entry 1

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Time Traveler for brilliant

Time Traveler

The first known use of brilliant was circa 1681

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Statistics for brilliant

Last Updated

18 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Brilliant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/brilliant. Accessed 26 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for brilliant

brilliant

adjective
How to pronounce brilliant (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of brilliant

: very bright : flashing with light
: very impressive or successful
: extremely intelligent : much more intelligent than most people

brilliant

adjective
bril·​liant | \ ˈbril-yənt How to pronounce brilliant (audio) \

Kids Definition of brilliant

1 : flashing with light : very bright brilliant jewels
2 : very impressive a brilliant career
3 : very smart or clever a brilliant student

Other Words from brilliant

brilliantly adverb

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Comments on brilliant

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