in·​can·​des·​cence | \ˌin-kən-ˈde-sᵊn(t)s also -(ˌ)kan- \

Definition of incandescence 

: the quality or state of being incandescent especially : emission by a hot body of radiation that makes it visible

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Examples of incandescence in a Sentence

candles made from whale oil were once highly prized because they burned with an incandescence superior to that of other candles

Recent Examples on the Web

This is called incandescence and is the way a traditional light bulb generates its light. Kevin Davenport, idahostatesman, "O say can you see? The science behind the booms and blooms of Independence Day fireworks," 3 July 2018 For sheer incandescence, Rihanna is the ensemble’s biggest get, though the movie slyly dims her star wattage by casting her as Nine Ball, a tech whiz in an Army jacket. Justin Chang,, "Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett pull off an enjoyable, low-fizz heist in 'Ocean's 8'," 6 June 2018 The remaining three movements not only took their incandescence from that opening — one fuse lighting the next in an unbroken chain — but flourished even more engrossingly in the space left by Valcuha’s comparative restraint at the outset. Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle, "San Francisco Symphony does right by little-known Prokofiev," 4 May 2018 Like the sparks that fly upward from the forge, struck to a brief moment of incandescence by the force of the blow, are the individuals whose troubles and fates furnish the daily business of a draft office. Rosa Inocencio Smith, The Atlantic, "The Atlantic Daily: Terror and Twitter," 5 June 2017 In the paintings of the 19th-century Danish artist Vilhelm Hammershoi, the color gray achieves a beguiling incandescence. Tom Delavan, New York Times, "An All-Gray Apartment That’s Not Blah — But Not Hygge Either," 22 Mar. 2017 Overnight, the Webcam on the rim of Halema`uma`u Crater recorded a few points of incandescence, waxing and waning in brightness, deep within the vent. Erik Klemetti, WIRED, "Rockfall "snuffs out" the Halema'uma'u vent?," 2 July 2009

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'incandescence.' 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 incandescence

circa 1656, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of incandescence was circa 1656

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a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair

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