luminous

adjective
lu·mi·nous | \ ˈlü-mə-nəs \

Definition of luminous 

1a : emitting or reflecting usually steady, suffused, or glowing light luminous objects—the nebula, the stars, the planets —Lincoln La Paz

b : of or relating to light or to luminous flux

2 : bathed in or exposed to steady light luminous with sunlight

3 : clear, enlightening a luminous explanation

4 : shining, illustrious a luminous film star a luminous performance

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Other words from luminous

luminously adverb
luminousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for luminous

bright, brilliant, radiant, luminous, lustrous mean shining or glowing with light. bright implies emitting or reflecting a high degree of light. brilliant implies intense often sparkling brightness. radiant stresses the emission or seeming emission of rays of light. luminous implies emission of steady, suffused, glowing light by reflection or in surrounding darkness. lustrous stresses an even, rich light from a surface that reflects brightly without glittering.

Did You Know?

Luminous, like its synonyms radiant, shining, glowing, and lustrous, is generally a positive adjective, especially when it describes something that doesn't literally glow, such as a face, a performance, or a poem. Luminous signs depend on a gas such as neon, krypton, argon, xenon, or radon—and you can use luminous (DayGlo) paint to make your own signs. New technologies have now given us luminous fabrics, which are being used to produce striking or creepy effects in clothing, upholstery, and interior surfaces.

Examples of luminous in a Sentence

I saw the cat's luminous eyes in my car's headlights. a watch with a luminous dial The room was luminous with sunlight.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Forever a red carpet beauty rule-breaker, Lupita Nyong’o pulled out all the stops to look more luminous—and golden—than ever before at the 2018 CFDA Awards. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Lupita Nyong’o’s Liquid Gold Lips Just Shut Down the CFDA Awards Red Carpet," 5 June 2018 Does having your skin look radiant, plumper, more bouncy, brightened, luminous, more hydrated in 10 to 12 minutes sound good to you? Kathleen Hou, The Cut, "What’s in Your Sheet Mask?," 28 Mar. 2018 IceCube, a strange telescope made of deep glacial ice at the South Pole, has detected neutrinos from a distant, luminous galaxy. Mark Bowen, Scientific American, "Neutrinos on Ice: Astronomers' Long Hunt for Source of Extragalactic "Ghost Particles" Pays Off," 12 July 2018 By their reckoning, one of the most luminous objects in the known universe hurls these high-energy neutrinos toward Earth—a galaxy called a blazar located in the constellation Orion about four billion light years away. Robert Lee Hotz, WSJ, "Scientists Track Neutrinos Through Ice to Their Source in the Cosmos," 12 July 2018 But Ted had been a semi-pro baseball player, and as Johnny was growing up, Mickey Mantle was proving that Oklahoma boys could become luminous stars on the diamond. Jon Wertheim, SI.com, "Johnny Bench Is Already a Hall-of-Famer, But He's Looking For a New Distinction," 5 July 2018 Olivia looks back at him, her luminous brown skin popping against one of her signature white coats. Kara Brown, The Cut, "Olivia Pope Was Helen of Troy," 19 Apr. 2018 Meanwhile, Drake’s rise to stardom represented a breakthrough for male sensitivity in hip-hop, on display in an aesthetic swerve toward sinuously hybrid songs in which rap bleeds into singing against purpled and luminous soundscapes. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "What Linkin Park Gave to Pop Music," 25 June 2018 Mejier beautifully translates their dancing contrapuntal complexity to the harp, and her playing is luminous, resonant, and graceful. Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, "Music / Post No Bills Lavinia Meijer rethinks the typically ornate sound of the harp for a minimalist repertoire," 5 June 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for luminous

Middle English, from Latin luminosus, from lumin-, lumen

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Statistics for luminous

Last Updated

12 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for luminous

The first known use of luminous was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for luminous

luminous

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of luminous

: producing or seeming to produce light

: filled with light : brightly lit

: very bright in color

luminous

adjective
lu·mi·nous | \ ˈlü-mə-nəs \

Kids Definition of luminous

: giving off light The dial of the clock was luminous and it shed a very soft green light. —George Selden, The Cricket in Times Square

Other words from luminous

luminously adverb

luminous

adjective
lu·mi·nous | \ ˈlü-mə-nəs \

Medical Definition of luminous 

1 : emitting or reflecting usually steady, suffused, or glowing light

2 : of or relating to light or to luminous flux

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Comments on luminous

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