1 of 2


: light entry 4 sense 9a
lite beer
lite salad dressing
: diminished or lacking in substance or seriousness
lite news
specifically : being an innocuous or unthreatening version
often used postpositively
it is film noir lite James Greenberg


2 of 2

noun combining form

: mineral
: rock
: fossil

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web
The lite model is designed for handheld play, easy to toss into a carry-on, and is compatible with over 5,000 games. Sophie Dodd, Travel + Leisure, 24 Apr. 2023 The problem for Apple was that the Windows PC and Chromebook reacted and adopted many of the positive characteristics of the iPad like capacitive touch, pen, app store, LTE, long battery life and thin and lite. Patrick Moorhead, Forbes, 15 Oct. 2021 The scratchings in question here are a series of diary entries by the fictitious 4th-century AD Roman matron whose name is in the title; the novel consists of her jottings over two decades—shopping lists, somewhat lite musings on parties and friends, affairs and deaths. Daniel Mendelsohn, Town & Country, 1 May 2021 Of course no one could have guessed the level of success that would await Underwood, but this glossy confection of lite-country-pop would still sound suitable in her live shows. Melissa Ruggieri, USA TODAY, 22 May 2022 With lite navigation, bike riders will be able to see details about their route without needing to keep their screen on or engage turn-by-turn navigation. Alexis Benveniste, CNN, 6 Oct. 2021 It’s rounded out with intriguing talents like Bridgers, the lite-country singer Ingrid Andress, the rapper Chika and the soulful dance-music producer Kaytranada. Ben Sisario, New York Times, 24 Nov. 2020 The acoustic guitar twirl signifies late-nineties R. & B., and the stuttering, dancehall-lite pop-radio rhythms evoke the decades that follow. Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, 23 Dec. 2022 Highlights include lite bites, wine and beer discounts, along with holiday décor. San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 Dec. 2022 See More

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

Word History


Noun combining form

borrowed from French, respelling of earlier -lithe, borrowed from Greek líthos "stone, rock," of obscure origin

Note: As pointed out by the Oxford English Dictionary, first edition, the acceptability of the non-classical spelling -lite for -lithe or -lith may have been advanced by the long-established word chrysolite.

First Known Use


1962, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of lite was in 1962

Dictionary Entries Near lite

Cite this Entry

“Lite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 May. 2023.

Medical Definition


variant of light entry 2

More from Merriam-Webster on lite

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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