liv·​en | \ ˈlī-vən How to pronounce liven (audio) \
livened; livening\ ˈlī-​və-​niŋ How to pronounce livening (audio) , ˈlīv-​niŋ \

Definition of liven

transitive verb

: enliven often used with uphe … livened up the editorial pageCurrent Biography

Examples of liven in a Sentence

He played some music to liven the atmosphere.
Recent Examples on the Web David Barr Kirtley says that Gilliam’s whimsical worlds work best when there’s plenty of witty banter to liven things up. Geek's Guide To The Galaxy, WIRED, "Terry Gilliam Movies Are All About Imagination," 13 Nov. 2020 Yzerman also re-signed forward Sam Gagner, who, like Ryan, shoots right and should liven up a power play that chugged along at 14.9%. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "Why Red Wings' Tyler Bertuzzi has 'loved' Steve Yzerman's moves this offseason," 29 Oct. 2020 Inside the recording booth, Otaola’s producers rushed to gather enough content to liven up his nearly three-hour-long performance. Stephania Taladrid, The New Yorker, "How Pro-Trump Disinformation Is Swaying a New Generation of Cuban-American Voters," 26 Oct. 2020 For those looking to liven up their coffee intake and bust out of the caffeine doldrums, here are seven different types of coffee drinks and where to find them around Dallas. Claire Ballor, Dallas News, "7 Dallas coffee drinks that will switch up your caffeine routine," 20 Oct. 2020 Artworks nearly jump off their pedestals, glow in alcoves and liven up walls. Alicia Eler, Star Tribune, "With a bold splash of color, Mpls. Institute of Art reimagines its South Asian galleries," 16 Oct. 2020 However, its traditional fire pit design with a classy black finish will liven up any backyard bonfire. Matt Allyn, Popular Mechanics, "Rauchbier Is the Best Fall Beer," 14 Oct. 2020 Mustard, in its multitude of configurations, is one of the easiest and most effective ways to liven up just about any dish. Paul Stephen,, "Paul’s Cooking Tips: Five types of mustard you need and why," 3 Oct. 2020 The feminist icon's story is interesting enough on its own, but director Julie Taymor goes to some exceedingly trippy, downright strange and honestly distracting places to liven things up. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "What to stream this weekend: Netflix's 'The Boys in the Band,' Amazon's 'The Glorias'," 2 Oct. 2020

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

circa 1628, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for liven

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The first known use of liven was circa 1628

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Statistics for liven

Last Updated

20 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Liven.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for liven


How to pronounce liven (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of liven

: to make (something) more lively, interesting, or exciting
: to become more lively, interesting, or exciting


liv·​en | \ ˈlī-vən How to pronounce liven (audio) \
livened; livening

Kids Definition of liven

: to make or become lively
Hint: Liven is often used with up. He knows how to liven up a meeting.

More from Merriam-Webster on liven

Nglish: Translation of liven for Spanish Speakers

Comments on liven

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