green light


Definition of green light

: authority or permission to proceed

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from green light

green-light \ ˈgrēn-​ˌlīt How to pronounce green-light (audio) \ transitive verb

Examples of green light in a Sentence

we were given the green light to use the town commons for our fund-raiser
Recent Examples on the Web The 4s and 5s, that's Sabonis and Turner with the starters, have a green light to go after missed shots on offense. J. Michael, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: Bad defensive rebounding holds back Indiana Pacers from being elite in East," 3 Jan. 2020 Bittinger, who was driving a 2005 Ducati motorcycle, had a green light and was wearing a helmet, police said. Tess Williams, Anchorage Daily News, "Anchorage man fined $300 for role in fatal crash," 31 Dec. 2019 By this time next year, America’s two most potent geopolitical rivals will have a green light to sell advanced missiles to the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. Eli Lake, Twin Cities, "Eli Lake: Iranian mayhem is about to get worse," 25 Oct. 2019 The female had a green light and started through the intersection. Karen Kucher, San Diego Union-Tribune, "81-year-old man killed in Carmel Valley crash," 7 Oct. 2019 If approved, Trader Joe’s will have the green light to pursue the rest of the permitting process, which would entail applying for a conditional use permit and having a second go in front of the Planning Commission and the legislative process. Shwanika Narayan,, "Trader Joe’s could be coming to Hayes Valley," 3 Oct. 2019 According to witnesses, Serrano was crossing against the pedestrian light, and Yurcak had a green light. Claire Goodman, Houston Chronicle, "Pedestrian struck, killed by suspected drunk driver," 2 Jan. 2020 The planned film, which was first reported back in May by Slash Film and hasn’t been formally green lit as of yet, is titled Shrunk and hails from a story idea Gad brought to Disney. Nick Romano,, "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids," 5 Dec. 2019 Plants are green because their leaves contain chlorophyll, a pigment that reflects the green light in the middle of the spectrum while absorbing and using for photosynthesis the blue and red wavelengths at either end of it. The Economist, "New ways to make vertical farming stack up," 29 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'green light.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of green light

1937, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for green light

from the green traffic light which signals permission to proceed

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about green light

Time Traveler for green light

Time Traveler

The first known use of green light was in 1937

See more words from the same year

Statistics for green light

Last Updated

5 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Green light.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Feb. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on green light

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for green light

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with green light

Comments on green light

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
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!