\ ˈshīn \
shone\ ˈshōn , especially Canadian and British  ˈshän \ or shined; shining

Definition of shine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to emit rays of light
2 : to be bright by reflection of light
3a : to be eminent, conspicuous, or distinguished shines in math
b : to perform extremely well when will stocks really shine again?— Temma Ehrenfeld
4 : to have a bright glowing appearance his face shone with enthusiasm
5 : to be conspicuously evident or clear

transitive verb

1a : to cause to emit light
b : to throw or direct the light of
2 past tense and past participle shined : to make bright by polishing shined his shoes



Definition of shine (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : brightness caused by the emission of light
2 : brightness caused by the reflection of light : luster the shine of polished silver
3 : brilliance, splendor still has a shine about her
4 : fair weather : sunshine rain or shine
5 : trick, caper usually used in plural
6 : liking, fancy took a shine to him
7a : a polish or gloss given to shoes
b : a single polishing of a pair of shoes

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Synonyms for shine

Synonyms: Verb

beam, radiate, ray

Synonyms: Noun

burnish, gloss, luminance, luster (or lustre), polish, sheen

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Examples of shine in a Sentence


The sun was shining through the clouds. lamps shining from the windows She found a sport where she can really shine.


the shine of polished silver He had a nice shine on his shoes. Would you like a shine?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Campbell has been promoting under the radar international brands, particularly those from the African continent, using her visibility at public appearances to shine a light on the next generation of design talent. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Naomi Campbell Used Her Global Citizen Wardrobe to Showcase International Design," 5 Dec. 2018 But Reagan has cast the site as a new way to shine light on anonymous spending. Dustin Gardiner, azcentral, "Critics hit Michele Reagan over long-running election site delays," 6 June 2018 Hence, a humble mission statement for the book: to shine a light on a starkly dark and little understood subject in the hopes of helping others who could be going through the same pain. Rob Ledonne,, "For Sebastian Slovin, a hope to rise above the stigma of suicide," 8 Apr. 2018 Pittsley is doing the tour to draw attention to Connecticut’s role in the war and to shine a light on a campaign to pay for a statue of Stubby. Susan Dunne,, "Animated Film 'Sgt. Stubby' Pays Homage To New Haven's Most Famous Dog," 26 Mar. 2018 Six by Ten is composed of 14 concise, chapter-length narratives, which each shine a light on a different aspect of the US prison system’s darkest corners. Vox Staff, Vox, "The most thought-provoking books the Vox staff read in 2018," 21 Dec. 2018 The actors don’t always let the songs shine to their full potential, and several don’t sound quite confident in their singing; there’s a sameness in the vocals that doesn’t account for whether the song is meant to be funny, angry or heartfelt. Matthew J. Palm,, "Entertaining Sherlock Holmes musical doesn't always hit the right emotional notes," 9 June 2018 If house had been finished, directly above rotunda on the main floor would have been black-and-white marble tile in the shape of a star, with a hole through each point, so that light shone down through the center. Southern Living, "WATCH: The Nation's Largest Octagonal House Is In Mississippi, And It Was Never Finished," 4 June 2018 Brinkley’s gifts shine brightest in such passages, when his characters tiptoe toward but never quite reach a lucidity about their own emotional conditions. Brittany Allen, Longreads, "Masters of Contradiction," 24 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

High shine and pailetted opulence of a ’70s stripe informed the evening choices of Adwoa Aboah (in Halpern), Marion Cotillard (in Chanel haute couture), and Emma Stone (in custom Louis Vuitton). Edward Barsamian, Vogue, "10 Best Dressed: Week of October 1, 2018," 1 Oct. 2018 Similar to skin exfoliation, a scalp detox involves applying cleansing ingredients — like pore-clearing charcoal or antibacterial oils — to draw out impurities and restore shine and vibrancy to hair. New York Times, "How to Detox Your Scalp for Healthier Hair," 3 July 2018 Finish with a spritz of hairspray for shine and hold, and add the floral hat to align with the part. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "The Secret to Kate Middleton’s Shiny Royal Wedding Hair," 21 May 2018 But the controversial American won't let that take the shine off his first major triumph, secured Sunday after the challenges of Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler all fell away. Don Riddell, CNN, "Patrick Reed confronts negative headlines: 'I am who I am'," 9 Apr. 2018 But there’s much more to these new lawmakers than just a camera-friendly shine. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "The Bad Girls' Caucus Has Been Sworn In and Congress May Never Be the Same," 3 Jan. 2019 Listen to a song, and try to pay attention to just one instrument—good headphones will let each one shine through; bad ones will muddy the whole mix. David Pierce, WSJ, "Why You Need Better Headphones—and Which Ones You Should Buy," 9 Dec. 2018 Cutler salon senior stylist Jenny Balding says those with fine hair should look for volume-building shampoo and conditioners, such as the Redken High Rise Volume, to fake thickness and boost shine. Audrey Noble, Harper's BAZAAR, "How To Make Your Hair Grow Longer and Thicker," 14 Nov. 2018 The dialogue just didn't have the same shine this go-round, either. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "True Detective seems ready to return to top form in new S3 trailer," 2 Nov. 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for shine


Middle English, from Old English scīnan; akin to Old High German skīnan to shine and perhaps to Greek skia shadow

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Learn More about shine

Dictionary Entries near shine





shine ball


shine through

Statistics for shine

Last Updated

16 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shine

The first known use of shine was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for shine



English Language Learners Definition of shine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to give off light
: to have a smooth surface that reflects light
: to be very good or successful at an activity



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

: the brightness that results when light is reflected from a surface
: the act of polishing a pair of shoes


\ ˈshīn \
shone\ ˈshōn \ or shined; shining

Kids Definition of shine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to give off light The sun is shining.
2 : to be glossy : gleam He polished the silver until it shone.
3 : to direct the light of Shine the flashlight in that corner.
4 : to be outstanding She shines in sports.
5 : to make bright by polishing shine shoes



Kids Definition of shine (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : brightness from light given off or reflected the shine of polished silver
2 : fair weather : sunshine rain or shine
3 : polish entry 2 sense 1 My shoes need a shine.

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More from Merriam-Webster on shine

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shine

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for shine

Spanish Central: Translation of shine

Nglish: Translation of shine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shine for Arabic Speakers

Comments on shine

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