Definition of footlight

1 : a light that casts its illumination upward from foot level especially : one of a row of lights set across the front of a stage floor usually used in plural
2 footlights plural : the stage as a profession

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

First Known Use of footlight

circa 1839, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about footlight

Time Traveler for footlight

Time Traveler

The first known use of footlight was circa 1839

See more words from the same year

Statistics for footlight

Cite this Entry

“Footlight.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 14 December 2019.

Comments on footlight

What made you want to look up footlight? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to assail by words or arguments

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble tiles that read scrabble quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!