lilt·​ing | \ˈlil-tiŋ \

Definition of lilting 

1 : characterized by a rhythmical swing or cadence a lilting stride

2 : cheerful, buoyant a lilting comedy

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Other Words from lilting

liltingly \ˈlil-​tiŋ-​lē \ adverb
liltingness noun

Examples of lilting in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Where: Cutter Avenue at Summer Street in front of Winter Hill Bank, noon-2 p.m. PUMPKIN BREAD This young folk quintet made a splash with original fiddle tunes and lilting songs at Boston Celtic Music Festival in January. Zoë Madonna,, "Too many choices at PorchFest? Let’s walk you through it.," 9 May 2018 Yee speaks in a lilting manner, letting her thoughts spill forth freely, stream-of-consciousness style. Monica Kim, Vogue, "Finding a New Home in Tokyo, Antwerp Six Designer Marina Yee Is Ready for Recognition," 19 Oct. 2018 As key phrases arise, Ms. Magic will begin strumming and humming, weaving those lines of dialogue into a lilting melody. Alex Williams, New York Times, "Tech Elites Recreate Burning Man Inside Their Living Rooms," 29 June 2018 With a snapping beat and lilting synths, the uplifting future bass track is an expressive high point of Tear, and was inspired by stories fans have told the group. Tamar Herman, Billboard, "BTS Releases Expressive 'Love Yourself: Tear' Album: Listen," 18 May 2018 Known for his dry, friendly style of comedy and his lilting voice, Funches has been involved in stand-up for nearly 15 years. Nick Vadala,, "Comedian Ron Funches just lost 140 pounds. He's still going to eat a cheesesteak when he's in Philly," 10 July 2018 That’s this kind of white zinfandel – strawberries without the shortcake and whipped cream, but with a lilting sweetness and enough rejuvenating acidity for it to be paired with sandwiches of ham and cheese, curried chicken or tuna. Mike Dunne, sacbee, "This year's best local wine you can (mostly) get for under $20," 20 June 2018 Gevers has a lilting accent and speaks fluently in the modular capsules and rehearsed-casual delivery of someone wearing a wireless headset microphone in a theatrical round. Gideon Lewis-kraus, WIRED, "The Blockchain: A Love Story—And a Horror Story," 18 June 2018 The gal in the lilting dress and the crazy shoes prevails, and books a room. Karen Stabiner, New York Times, "All That a Mother-of-Bride Dress Reveals, Inside and Out," 14 June 2018

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

1800, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near lilting





lilting skip


lily family

Statistics for lilting

Last Updated

26 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for lilting

The first known use of lilting was in 1800

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Comments on lilting

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


to move with a clumsy heavy tread

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