spotlight

noun
spot·​light | \ ˈspät-ˌlīt How to pronounce spotlight (audio) \

Definition of spotlight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a projected spot of light used to illuminate brilliantly a person, object, or group on a stage
b : public notice or attention held the political spotlight
2a : a light designed to direct a narrow intense beam of light on a small area
b : something that illuminates brilliantly

spotlight

verb
spotlighted or spotlit; spotlighting

Definition of spotlight (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to illuminate with a spotlight
2 : to direct attention to : highlight

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Examples of spotlight in a Sentence

Noun

They aimed the spotlight at the center of the stage. A spotlight moved across the stage. The actor stood in the spotlight. a baseball star who hates the spotlight They're always in the spotlight. The news article turned the spotlight on the city's financial problems.

Verb

She was spotlighted as she sang her solo. The news spotlighted the city's financial problems.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

As one of the most notoriously private A-list celebrities out there, the 40-year-old mother of one opts to stay out of the spotlight as much as possible, but the actress was in attendance for the Life Ball 2019 this weekend. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Katie Holmes Wore a Missoni Ball Gown and Looked So Chic," 10 June 2019 Since then, Hornbeck has mostly stayed out of the spotlight. CBS News, "Jayme Closs: Hometown Hero," 8 June 2019 The Daily Mail took its coverage a step further and interviewed Barbara Bowman, who had just spoken to Newsweek in February after being out of the spotlight for years. Longreads, "How the Cosby Story Finally Went Viral — And Why It Took So Long," 7 June 2019 Affordable housing has taken more of a spotlight in Naperville as the city makes decisions on massive residential projects like Polo Club in south Naperville and the Fifth Avenue development project just north of downtown. Erin Hegarty, Naperville Sun, "Naperville seeks bids for affordable housing plan following report that found city's stock is lacking," 4 June 2019 Since the couple presented their first child to the world at a photo call on May 8, Harry has attended a couple events, while Meghan has remained out of the spotlight. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Why Meghan Markle Isn't at Ella Windsor's Wedding, But Prince Harry Is," 18 May 2019 Since his arrival on May 6, 2019, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor has been kept relatively out of the spotlight. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Princess Diana's Sister, Lady Jane Fellowes, Has Already Met Baby Archie," 13 May 2019 If Muñiz doesn't want the spotlight now, there's always voice acting! Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "Jennifer Lopez's Daughter Just Blew Us All Away With Her Amazing Singing Voice," 15 May 2019 Words written by Brett Kavanaugh in his 1983 Georgetown Prep yearbook have been in the spotlight over the past few days after a New York Times article highlighted some Kavanaugh references. Jennifer Earl, Fox News, "Kavanaugh clashes with Democratic senator over yearbook entries," 27 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Each Mexican state has its own collection of dishes that spotlights its unique flavors, so there’s no shortage of dishes to bring to guests, Soto says. Ava Garcia, azcentral, "Agave del Scottsdale is open now. Here's what to expect on the Mexico City-style menu," 12 June 2019 The 30-year-old indigenous Canadian, who is based in Toronto but from the Nlaka’pamux Nation in British Columbia, designs shapely baubles that spotlight his Coast Salish culture in an ultra-modern way. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "How These Shapely Statement Earrings Celebrate Coast Salish Culture," 13 Mar. 2019 India created her own take on the alphabet by crafting delicate sterling silver vermeil pendant necklaces that spotlight the motifs. Emily Selter, Town & Country, "India Hicks’s Newest Jewelry Collection Was Inspired by Her Father," 4 Apr. 2017 It was spotlighted on the main stage and also earns a spot on the Pixel 3a overview page. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "PSA: The Pixel 3a isn’t getting the same unlimited Google Photos storage as the Pixel 3," 8 May 2019 The departures also spotlight Newmark’s recruitment approach. Micah Maidenberg, WSJ, "Newmark’s Recent Acquisition Comes With Fewer Brokers," 11 Sep. 2018 The Nordic event also spotlights sustainable designers from around the world, rather than focus on domestic talent, thereby drawing an unconventional crowd of stylish locals and overseas guests. Vogue, "The Best Street Style From Helsinki Fashion Week Spring 2019," 21 July 2018 The book also spotlights quirky and whimsical architecture around the world. USA TODAY, "Weird and wonderful architecture around the world," 23 May 2018 In 2018, the fest will screen 214 feature films and 253 shorts from 72 countries, while also spotlighting many regional filmmakers. cleveland.com, "23 things to do in Cleveland the weekend of April 5-8," 5 Apr. 2018

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

Noun

1904, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1907, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Learn More about spotlight

Dictionary Entries near spotlight

spot lamp

spot lens

spotless

spotlight

spotlighter

spotlike

spot line

Statistics for spotlight

Last Updated

16 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for spotlight

The first known use of spotlight was in 1904

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More Definitions for spotlight

spotlight

noun

English Language Learners Definition of spotlight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a device that directs a narrow, bright beam of light on a small area
: the area of light created by a spotlight
: public attention or notice

spotlight

verb

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

: to shine a spotlight on (someone or something)
: to give special attention to (something)

spotlight

noun
spot·​light | \ ˈspät-ˌlīt How to pronounce spotlight (audio) \

Kids Definition of spotlight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a spot of light used to show up a particular area, person, or thing (as on a stage)
2 : public notice She's a celebrity but doesn't like the spotlight.
3 : a lamp used to direct a narrow strong beam of light on a small area

spotlight

verb
spotlighted or spotlit\ ˈspät-​ˌlit \; spotlighting

Kids Definition of spotlight (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to light up with or as if with a spotlight
2 : to bring to public attention

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Comments on spotlight

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