lack·​lus·​ter | \ ˈlak-ˌlə-stər How to pronounce lackluster (audio) \

Definition of lackluster

: lacking in sheen, brilliance, or vitality : dull, mediocre The actor gave a lackluster performance.

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Other Words from lackluster

lackluster noun

Did You Know?

In its earliest uses, "lackluster" (also spelled "lacklustre") usually described the eyes or face, as in "a lackluster stare." Later, it came to describe other things whose sheen had been removed; Charles Dickens, in his 1843 novel Martin Chuzzlewit, writes of the faded image of the dragon on the sign outside a village alehouse: "many a wintry storm of rain, snow, sleet, and hail, had changed his colour from a gaudy blue to a faint lack-lustre shade of grey." In addition to "a glow or sheen," "luster" can refer to a superficial attractiveness or appearance of excellence; it follows that "lackluster" is often used as a synonym for "unspectacular," as in our examples.

Examples of lackluster in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Roadster, coming off his lackluster 16th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby, is the 6-5 favorite. John Cherwa,, "Racing! Congratulations to Rafael Bejarano on his 4,000th win," 16 June 2019 The menu prices are on par with what’s normal in the neighborhood, but the lackluster execution failed to make good on the price point’s promise. Soleil Ho,, "The Vault, San Francisco’s new Financial District blockbuster, comes up empty," 13 June 2019 Since debuting at $45 per share, Uber stock has fluctuated at a lackluster range compared to volatile counterpart Lyft. Anne Sraders, Fortune, "Uber Investors Are Wary as it Rides Into the Helicopter Business," 13 June 2019 But the defending champions have been in unconvincing form in the build-up to the event, stumbling to a lackluster 1-0 home defeat by Jamaica before being comprehensively outplayed in a 3-0 loss to Venezuela on Sunday. Rob Woollard,, "USMNT take on the 2019 Gold Cup with an eye on 2022," 13 June 2019 Although initial jobless claims remain near historically low levels, the data add to a recent spat of lackluster economic figures that could push the Fed to act sooner rather than later on interest rates this year, analysts said. Michael Wursthorn, WSJ, "Energy Stocks Lead U.S. Benchmarks Higher," 13 June 2019 Martell bounced back from a lackluster scrimmage to play well in the spring game. Christy Cabrera Chirinos,, "Manny Diaz: Hurricanes have turned QB question from ‘bad problem’ into 'good problem’," 12 June 2019 Meanwhile, long-term bond yields dropped, which—combined with the lackluster job reports—also suggests a boost from the Fed is forthcoming. Allison Schrager, Quartz, "Investors are betting on a rate cut. They shouldn’t.," 12 June 2019 Trump’s approval ratings are unlikely to go over 50%, given his lackluster starting point. Brendan Lind, The Conversation, "The most unpopular presidential election winner ever could win again in 2020," 10 June 2019

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

1600, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for lackluster

Last Updated

19 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for lackluster

The first known use of lackluster was in 1600

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More Definitions for lackluster



English Language Learners Definition of lackluster

: lacking excitement or interest

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Comments on lackluster

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


having a desire to acquire more things

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