neon

noun
ne·​on | \ ˈnē-ˌän How to pronounce neon (audio) \

Definition of neon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a nonmetallic chemical element that is found in minute amounts in air and is used especially in electric lamps, in lasers, and as a cryogenic refrigerant — see Chemical Elements Table
2a : a discharge lamp in which the gas contains a large proportion of neon
b : a sign composed of such lamps
c : the illumination provided by such lamps or signs

neon

adjective

Definition of neon (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or using neon
2 : extremely bright : fluorescent neon yellow

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Other Words from neon

Noun

neoned \ ˈnē-​ˌänd How to pronounce neon (audio) \ adjective

Examples of neon in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The animation is sketchy and the colors are saturated, playing up the puke green of a neon sign and violet of an alleyway. Greta Rainbow, Vulture, "MTV’s Downtown Is a Hyperspecific Time Capsule," 7 May 2021 The lawn at the cultural center is showcasing five phrases written in neon, all the last words of notable people. Washington Post, "In the galleries: Simulated stone and neon artworks reflect the transience of life," 30 Apr. 2021 In the beginning scenes, everyone but our heroines are decked out in neon pink to various degrees. Sarah Spellings, Vogue, "Josie and the Pussycats Is One of the Greatest Y2K Fashion Movies," 9 Apr. 2021 Meanwhile, Viola Davis gave us a moment in neon green while Kerry Washington wins for best pose. Anna Moeslein, Glamour, "SAG Awards 2021: Here Are the Best-Dressed Stars," 4 Apr. 2021 Their nighttime clash in Hong Kong is lit in neon, giving the pair an otherworldly glow. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, "The Awesome Emptiness of Godzilla vs. Kong," 31 Mar. 2021 Later that night, Ahmed was behind a bullhorn, leading the crowd in chants while HOUSEKEYS NOT HANDCUFFS was projected in neon green on the fountain in the center of the lake. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "Last Night in Echo Park," 26 Mar. 2021 Her dark hair with a splash of neon green on top is her signature—the Gen Z punk answer to Ariana Grande's ponytail or Harry Styles's bushy mane. Elizabeth Logan, Glamour, "Billie Eilish Just Went Platinum Blond, and It Looks Incredible," 17 Mar. 2021 The new colorway joins the ranks of eye-catching hues like neon green, lavender, and a brilliant shade of persimmon. Emily Ruane, refinery29.com, "ICYMI: ILYSM’s Sold-Out Sock Boots Are Back In Stock," 17 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Instead of a Torah ark, the crates face a pink-and-green neon sign: a cricket inside a heart. Anna Kordunsky, The New Yorker, "The Case for Eating Crickets," 28 May 2020 On a normal night, storefronts light up the street with neon signs, beckoning customers with promises of trinkets or ice cold beer. Laura Schulte, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Despite losing out on spring break vacationers, Wisconsin Dells businesses remain optimistic about summer," 22 May 2020 The building’s other neon sign is attached to the side and advertises the parking spaces. Jon Arnold, Dallas News, "Historic Downtown McKinney sign lifted into place atop cultural district," 8 May 2020 While Death Stranding might as well explain itself with giant neon signs, its themes and setting are eerily prescient right now. Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "Games getting us through COVID-19—blocks, roguelites, whatever Death Stranding is," 25 Apr. 2020 Piece by piece, the Prescott Valley Motel neon sign that glowed for decades was taken down by a crane this month, making way for a Circle K gas station to open where the motel once stood. Kimi Robinson, azcentral, "The vintage neon Prescott Valley Motel sign has been saved. Here's what's next," 14 Apr. 2020 Mayor London Breed joined more than 400 people at Islais Creek Park in the morning and rallied the crowd in their neon orange vests. Lauren Hernández, SFChronicle.com, "Thousands pick up SF trash for Battle for the Bay," 21 Sep. 2019 Obviously enjoying Labor Day weekend, Kim also shared a photo of North hanging out with her friends, all of whom coordinated their looks by wearing neon outfits. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "North West Looks So Much Like Kim Kardashian in Her Labor Day Weekend Instagram Posts," 2 Sep. 2019 Guerra’s mural was a caricature of John Spacely on a grand scale, his bleach-blond hair, signature eye patch, and dangling cross earring blaring in neon colors against a black background. Rachel Syme, The New Yorker, "Jimmy Webb’s Undying Love for New York City (and Tight Pants)," 22 Apr. 2020

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

Noun

1898, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1904, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for neon

Noun

borrowed from Greek néon, neuter of néos "young, fresh, new" — more at new entry 1

Note: Name given to the gas by its discoverers, the British chemists William Ramsay (1852-1916) and Morris William Travers (1872-1961) in "On the Companion of Argon," Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, vol. 63 (1898), p. 438. According to a later account by Travers, the Latin name novum, "new," for the gas was suggested by William Ramsay's 13-year old son, and rendered in Greek by Ramsay to match the names of other recently discovered gases (see Morris W. Travers, The Discovery of the Rare Gases, London, 1928, p. 96).

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Statistics for neon

Last Updated

11 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Neon.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/neon. Accessed 14 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for neon

neon

noun

English Language Learners Definition of neon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a type of gas that is used in brightly colored electric signs and lights

neon

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of neon (Entry 2 of 2)

: using neon
: extremely bright

neon

noun
ne·​on | \ ˈnē-ˌän How to pronounce neon (audio) \

Kids Definition of neon

: a colorless gaseous chemical element found in very small amounts in the air and used in electric lights

neon

noun
ne·​on | \ ˈnē-ˌän How to pronounce neon (audio) \

Medical Definition of neon

: a colorless odorless primarily inert gaseous element found in minute amounts in air and used in electric lamps symbol Ne — see Chemical Elements Table

More from Merriam-Webster on neon

Nglish: Translation of neon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of neon for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about neon

Comments on neon

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