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glinted; glinting; glints

intransitive verb

archaic : to glance off an object
of rays of light : to be reflected at an angle from a surface
: to give off reflection in brilliant flashes
also : gleam
: to look quickly or briefly : glance
: to appear briefly or faintly

transitive verb

: to cause to glint


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: a tiny bright flash of light
: a brief or faint manifestation : glimmer
a glint of recognition
also : a trace of emotion expressed through the eyes
a steely glint in his eye
Choose the Right Synonym for glint

flash, gleam, glint, sparkle, glitter, glisten, glimmer, shimmer mean to send forth light.

flash implies a sudden outburst of bright light.

lightning flashed

gleam suggests a steady light seen through an obscuring medium or against a dark background.

lights gleamed in the valley

glint implies a cold glancing light.

glinting steel

sparkle suggests innumerable moving points of bright light.

the sparkling waters

glitter connotes a brilliant sparkling or gleaming.

glittering diamonds

glisten applies to the soft sparkle from a wet or oily surface.

glistening wet sidewalk

glimmer suggests a faint or wavering gleam.

a distant glimmering light

shimmer means shining with a wavering light.

a shimmering satin dress

Examples of glint in a Sentence

Verb The sun glinted off the tops of the waves. The waves glinted in the sunlight. Noun He saw glints of sunlight on the river's surface.
Recent Examples on the Web
Onto a stage set up for the NFL rally, Kansas City’s modern gridiron warriors hoisted the spoils of their latest, historic battle: the sterling silver Vince Lombardi Trophy, now glinting in the sun. Alisha Ebrahimji, CNN, 15 Feb. 2024 Better, locals say, to come back in the summer, when it’s all duded up, the Quonset-hut mural and facade glinting in the sun, the cafe’s patio brimming with diners peering down to the rushing water below, people throwing Frisbees on the lawn next door before buying tickets to the matinee. Sam McManis, Sacramento Bee, 30 Jan. 2024 There are times when, for all the glinting complexity of Guettel’s score, the play feels like a 105-minute-long ad for AA. Sara Holdren, Vulture, 28 Jan. 2024 Here the waste goes to sit and await the glinting salt. Abe Streep, Scientific American, 10 Nov. 2023 Strip out inflation and the precious metal doesn't glint quite so brightly. Joe Wallace, WSJ, 5 Dec. 2023 Once the tree is covered in glinting ornaments, dress your fireplace mantel, dining table, and bookcases with groupings of shimmering ribbons, gilded pinecones, and warm twinkle lights for an additional element of sparkle. Shivani Vyas, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 Dec. 2023 The sun glinted off the Anacostia River as a freight train rolled by. Justin Wm. Moyer, Washington Post, 27 Nov. 2023 All spacecraft in low Earth orbit reflect sunlight, and some glint enough to be visible to the naked eye—artificial constellations that compete with stellar ones. Ramin Skibba, WIRED, 6 Oct. 2023
There’s a glint in his eye that wasn’t there before. Troy Aidan Sambajon, The Christian Science Monitor, 14 Feb. 2024 Manning Walker turned her attention to the pair, with an anthropological glint. Alex Barasch, The New Yorker, 3 Feb. 2024 Low lighting is offset by curtains of crystal fairy lights that bring out the glint of the gold leaf wallpaper and bounce off the dramatic gilded bar and ceiling. Sophie Prideaux, Condé Nast Traveler, 8 Nov. 2023 On the fall, Swedish Pimples wobble erratically, but during more subtle presentations when the lure is practically hanging still, their glint alone is often enough to bring hungry fish around. Joe Cermele, Field & Stream, 4 Jan. 2024 There’s a manic glint that’s always in Fiona’s eyes, and the series is wonderfully coy about whether that glint reflects fanaticism or escalating dissatisfaction. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 26 Oct. 2023 The curves and lack of flat surface minimize the risk of ‘radar glint’ which could occur with the Nighthawk. David Hambling, Forbes, 29 Nov. 2023 Aside from the occasional glint of mischief in his eyes, Chalamet lacks that disquieting tartness so many have associated with Wonka. Mayukh Sen, Bon Appétit, 15 Dec. 2023 Armed with metal detectors, sometimes sifting through the sand by hand, his divers look for the smallest glint of treasure on the ocean floor. Jay O'Brien, ABC News, 11 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'glint.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Middle English, to dart obliquely, glint, alteration of glenten, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Swedish dialect glänta to clear up; akin to Old High German glanz bright, Old English geolu yellow — more at yellow

First Known Use


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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of glint was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near glint

Cite this Entry

“Glint.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


: to shine by reflection:
: to shine with small bright flashes
: to shine briefly
glint noun

More from Merriam-Webster on glint

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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