illumination

noun

il·​lu·​mi·​na·​tion i-ˌlü-mə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce illumination (audio)
1
: the action of illuminating or state of being illuminated: such as
a
: spiritual or intellectual enlightenment
b(1)
: a lighting up
(2)
: decorative lighting or lighting effects
c
: decoration by the art of illuminating
2
: the luminous flux per unit area on an intercepting surface at any given point
3
: one of the decorative features used in the art of illuminating or in decorative lighting

Examples of illumination in a Sentence

When taking photographs indoors, use a flash for illumination. They traveled to the temple in search of spiritual illumination. an old manuscript with beautiful illuminations
Recent Examples on the Web The Purkinje effect is the phenomenon where the sensitivity of the human eye to different colors varies depending on the level of illumination. Tiffany Acosta, The Arizona Republic, 4 Apr. 2024 What’s much harder to create, and infinitely more satisfying when done well, is a sense of illumination or explanation — not the shock itself but the backstory that led to a moment of revelation. Kathryn Vanarendonk, Vulture, 6 Mar. 2024 The free summertime Niagara Falls fireworks, as well as the nightly illumination of the falls, draw visitors to the attraction well after sundown. Stefanie Waldek, Condé Nast Traveler, 4 July 2023 The Old Farmer's Almanac details specific moonrise times for different ZIP codes across the U.S. The moon will be below the horizon in the U.S. at the time of peak illumination, so the Farmer's Almanac suggests spectators check it out on Wednesday or Thursday night instead. Aliza Chasan, CBS News, 22 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for illumination 

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

Word History

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near illumination

Cite this Entry

“Illumination.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/illumination. Accessed 20 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

illumination

noun
il·​lu·​mi·​na·​tion il-ˌü-mə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce illumination (audio)
1
a
: the action of illuminating or state of being illuminated
b
: amount of light
2
: gold or colored decoration in a manuscript

Medical Definition

illumination

noun
il·​lu·​mi·​na·​tion il-ˌü-mə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce illumination (audio)
1
: the action of supplying or brightening with light or the resulting state
2
: the luminous flux per unit area on an intercepting surface at any given point

called also illuminance

illuminate transitive verb
illuminated; illuminating

More from Merriam-Webster on illumination

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