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 Memorial Day weekend usually means a brilliant display of thousands of American flags on the lawn of the Boston Common. Fox News, "Air Force pilot who died in Vietnam honored by Texas high school student with stunning video tribute," 24 May 2020 In the first instance, almost all historians cite the same source, Joan Ungersma Halperin’s brilliant and definitive biography of Fénéon. Jed Perl, The New York Review of Books, "‘Almost Certain’," 14 May 2020 Anti-formulaic, the music from this album spoke to my heart and gave me hope that Black America had something to compare to the brilliant U.K. soul coming out of London. Longreads, "Funk Lessons in Sonic Solitude," 27 Apr. 2020 Instead try this brilliant offering, in which zoologist and science historian Cobb dives into the fundamentals—and the frontiers—of our understanding of the brain. Andrea Gawrylewski, Scientific American, "Recommended Books, May 2020," 23 Apr. 2020 But the president said that some of the most brilliant minds in the financial world are gonna be working on this. CBS News, "Transcript: Steven Mnuchin on "Face the Nation," March 29, 2020," 29 Mar. 2020 Then there is Trenton goalie Joey Cormier, who was brilliant in his past two Division 2 state championship game losses to Hartland, and had been scheduled to face Hartland again in the semifinals on March 12. Mick Mccabe, Detroit Free Press, "MHSAA may be giving false hope to athletes by 'suspending' playoffs | Opinion," 15 Mar. 2020 Rock Paper Scissors is beautiful and brilliant in its simplicity: Two players. Anna Ben Yehuda Rahmanan, Popular Mechanics, "The Long, Winding History of Rock Paper Scissors," 4 Mar. 2020 Point guard Trent Hudgens, a transfer from Moon Valley, was brilliant in the second half, knocking down big shots when Millennium got as close as two points in the final quarter. Richard Obert, azcentral, "Ironwood takes down No. 1 Millennium at its own game, captures first boys state basketball title," 2 Mar. 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

29 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Brilliant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/brilliant. Accessed 31 May. 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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