\ ˈlīt͟h How to pronounce lithe (audio) , ˈlīth How to pronounce lithe (audio) \

Definition of lithe

1 : easily bent or flexed lithe steel a lithe vine
2 : characterized by easy flexibility and grace a lithe dancer treading with a lithe silent step also : athletically slim the most lithe and graspable of waists — R. P. Warren

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from lithe

lithely adverb
litheness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for lithe



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of lithe in a Sentence

the lithe body of a dancer the lithe blade of a fencing foil
Recent Examples on the Web Senet boards were long and lithe, consisting of 30 squares laid out in three parallel rows of ten. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Best Board Games of the Ancient World," 6 Feb. 2020 These six Oregon pinot noirs, with their lithe structures, elevated acidity and modest alcohol percentages, over-deliver on quality for $20 a bottle or less. oregonlive, "6 Oregon pinot noirs you can buy for $20 or less," 6 Feb. 2020 Twenty minutes later, as the clock neared midnight, Kobe Bryant strolled into the press room at Staples Center, lithe with those high cheek bones and ferocious eyes. Michael Powell, New York Times, "Kobe Bryant Up Close: Ferocious and Flawed, Gruff and Gracious," 27 Jan. 2020 This blend of grenache, cinsault and syrah is lithe and racy, with aromas of cherries and spice, and a lovely hint of grapefruit rind on the finish. Washington Post, "For less than $17, this juicy red wine will take you to Rhone — and back," 24 Jan. 2020 The performances were characterized by lithe phrasing and warm, clear sound. New York Times, "After a Decade, a Monteverdi Masterpiece Flies Free," 27 Dec. 2019 Even without Underwater's lithe, lethal creatures swimming around out there in the dark, the sea imparts a terror all its own. Isaac Feldberg, Fortune, "What to Watch (and Skip) in Theaters and on HBO This Weekend," 10 Jan. 2020 The lithe athleticism and the expressive, rhythmic grace of a dancer inform his film performances, too. Washington Post, "These 18 movie stars are also amazing dancers. That’s their real superpower.," 9 Jan. 2020 In fact, if Kelly Olynyk is not fully up to speed at the start of the season, and if James Johnson is still in the doghouse, the only options at power forward might be Justise or Derrick Jones Jr., who, even bulked up, still seems a bit too lithe. Ira Winderman,, "ASK IRA: Is there more than meets the eye with James Johnson?," 2 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lithe.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of lithe

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lithe

Middle English, from Old English līthe gentle; akin to Old High German lindi gentle, Latin lentus slow

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lithe

Time Traveler for lithe

Time Traveler

The first known use of lithe was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for lithe

Last Updated

27 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Lithe.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for lithe


How to pronounce lithe (audio) How to pronounce lithe (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of lithe

: moving in an easy and graceful way


\ ˈlīt͟h How to pronounce lithe (audio) , ˈlīth \

Kids Definition of lithe

: limber entry 1, supple But his motions remained lithe and natural, as he moved easily among trees and shade.— Virginia Hamilton, M. C. Higgins

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on lithe

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lithe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lithe

Spanish Central: Translation of lithe

Nglish: Translation of lithe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lithe for Arabic Speakers

Comments on lithe

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

February 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of probity?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!