1

lighten

verb light·en \ ˈlī-tᵊn \

Definition of lighten

lightened; lightening play \ˈlīt-niŋ, ˈlī-tᵊn-iŋ\
transitive verb
1 :to make light or clear :illuminate
2 archaic :enlighten
3 :to make (something, such as a color) lighter
intransitive verb
1 a archaic :to shine brightly
b :to grow lighter :brighten
2 :to give out flashes of lightning

lightener

play \ˈlīt-nər, ˈlī-tᵊn-ər\ noun

Origin and Etymology of lighten

Middle English lightenen, from light


2

lighten

verb

Definition of lighten

lightened; lightening play \ˈlīt-niŋ, ˈlī-tᵊn-iŋ\
transitive verb
1 a :to relieve of a burden in whole or in part
  • the news lightened his mind
b :to reduce in weight or quantity :lessen
c :to make less wearisome :alleviate
  • lighten our sorrow
intransitive verb
1 :to become lighter or less burdensome
2 :to become more cheerful

lightener

play \ˈlīt-nər, ˈlī-tᵊn-ər\ noun

First Known Use of lighten

14th century

Synonym Discussion of lighten

relieve, alleviate, lighten, assuage, mitigate, allay mean to make something less grievous. relieve implies a lifting of enough of a burden to make it tolerable.
    • took an aspirin to relieve the pain
alleviate implies temporary or partial lessening of pain or distress.
    • the lotion alleviated the itching
lighten implies reducing a burdensome or depressing weight.
    • good news would lighten our worries
assuage implies softening or sweetening what is harsh or disagreeable.
    • ocean breezes assuaged the intense heat
mitigate suggests a moderating or countering of the effect of something violent or painful.
    • the need to mitigate barbaric laws
allay implies an effective calming or soothing of fears or alarms.
    • allayed their fears

LIGHTEN Defined for Kids

1

lighten

verb light·en \ ˈlī-tᵊn \

Definition of lighten for Students

lightened; lightening
:to make or become lighter, brighter, or clearer

lightener

noun

2

lighten

verb

Definition of lighten for Students

lightened; lightening
1 :to make or become less heavy
2 :to make less sad or serious
  • A joke lightened the mood.

lightener

noun


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