ra·​di·​ant | \ ˈrā-dē-ənt How to pronounce radiant (audio) \

Definition of radiant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : radiating rays or reflecting beams of light
b : vividly bright and shining : glowing
2 : marked by or expressive of love, confidence, or happiness a radiant smile
3a : emitted or transmitted by radiation
b : emitting or relating to radiant heat



Definition of radiant (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that radiates: such as
a : a point in the heavens at which the visible paths of meteors appear to meet when traced backward
b : the part of a gas or electric heater that becomes incandescent

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Other Words from radiant


radiantly adverb

Synonyms for radiant

Synonyms: Adjective

aglow, beaming, bright, glowing, sunny

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Choose the Right Synonym for radiant


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.

Examples of radiant in a Sentence


She had a radiant inner glow. She looked radiant at her wedding.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Meanwhile, the Queen was radiant in a bright pink ensemble for the royal outing. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, "Queen Elizabeth, Prince Charles and Camilla Bundle Up for One of Her Favorite Outings in Scotland," 7 Sep. 2019 So the work’s grand finish, radiant in Mahler’s writing, did not capture the profound personal resurrection it was meant to represent. Howard Reich, chicagotribune.com, "Classical reviews: Perlman’s triumph at Ravinia; Grant Park’s disappointing finale," 18 Aug. 2019 Walking Chanel’s show, which was the brand’s first since Karl passed away (RIP) and Virginie Viard stepped in as Creative Director, the new muse looked positively radiant in a textured two-tone suit amidst a faux library backdrop. Sara Radin, Teen Vogue, "Model Kaia Gerber Walked the Runway at Chanel and Givenchy During Paris Couture Fashion Week," 3 July 2019 Non-committal types who require a more temporary hint of color—the kind that lasts until it’s washed off—should pick up NARS' featherweight gel formula that leaves skin radiant in a matter of seconds. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "11 of the Best Self-Tanners, Just in Time for Skirt Season," 15 Apr. 2019 Arguably the greatest singer of the 20th century, Callas — eerily, well, radiant in a white satiny gown and rich red stole — was recreated for the occasion, down to the minutest movements of her hands and the subtlest facial gestures. Anthony Tommasini, New York Times, "What a Hologram of Maria Callas Can Teach Us About Opera," 15 Jan. 2018 Chapman shares her secrets for looking radiant and rested. Jessica Matlin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Royal Skin-Care Secrets You Need to Try for Yourself," 3 Sep. 2019 In the case of the Perseids, the radiant is the constellation Perseus. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al, "Perseid meteor shower 2019 peaks tonight: Best times, places to watch; livestream," 12 Aug. 2019 Featuring a full cast of actors of color, this beloved production transports the audience away to a radiant and exotic setting, befitting the mirth and magic of Shakespeare's romantic comedy. SFChronicle.com, "A Midsummer Night’s Dream," 9 Aug. 2019

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


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


circa 1741, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for radiant

Last Updated

20 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for radiant

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

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More Definitions for radiant



English Language Learners Definition of radiant

: having or showing an attractive quality of happiness, love, health, etc.
: bright and shining
technical : sent out from something in rays or waves that you cannot see


ra·​di·​ant | \ ˈrā-dē-ənt How to pronounce radiant (audio) \

Kids Definition of radiant

1 : giving out or reflecting rays of light the radiant sun
2 : glowing with love, confidence, or joy a radiant smile
3 : transmitted by radiation


ra·​di·​ant | \ ˈrād-ē-ənt How to pronounce radiant (audio) \

Medical Definition of radiant

1 : emitted or transmitted by radiation
2 : emitting or relating to radiant heat

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Comments on radiant

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


formidable, illustrious, or eminent

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