star·​light | \ˈstär-ˌlīt \

Definition of starlight 

: the light given by the stars

Examples of starlight in a Sentence

We had to find our way by starlight.

Recent Examples on the Web

This movement can be detected in a slight shift in the color of the starlight, via the Doppler effect. William Herkewitz, Popular Mechanics, "Earth-Like Planet Found Orbiting the Nearest Star to the Sun," 24 Aug. 2016 Since exoplanets are drowned out by starlight, astronomers have to use clever, indirect ways to tease out the existence of a distant world. Loren Grush, The Verge, "A cold ‘super-Earth’ may live around a nearby star," 14 Nov. 2018 This is necessary because stars are around a million times brighter than planets and even brighter than everything else in a system, so the only way to take photos is to block out the starlight. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "The First Picture of a Newborn Planet," 2 July 2018 The first starlight might have lit up the cosmos just 250 million years after the Big Bang—a blink of an eye in cosmic time. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "The First Stars May Have Formed Just 250 Million Years After the Big Bang," 17 May 2018 Detecting planets around distant stars can be incredibly difficult, as the starlight usually overpowers the much dimmer planet. Loren Grush, The Verge, "Astronomers snap one of the best baby pics yet of a newborn planet," 2 July 2018 That's why the traditional methods that are used to find exoplanets, like looking for dips in starlight as planets pass in front of their star, don't work for planets that are still developing. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Three 'baby' planets found forming around newborn star," 13 June 2018 George was a great nighttime big snook fisherman with a keen understanding of Florida Keys bridges and tides and could navigate the maze of islands of Everglades National Park, even by starlight., "Deaths in South Florida: 6/3," 3 June 2018 These are periodic dips in starlight that occur when a planet’s orbit takes it in front of its host star. Denise Chow /, NBC News, "Watch live as NASA's TESS exoplanet-hunting satellite launches into space," 16 Apr. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for starlight

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for starlight

The first known use of starlight was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for starlight



English Language Learners Definition of starlight

: the light produced by stars


star·​light | \ˈstär-ˌlīt \

Kids Definition of starlight

: the light given by the stars

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More from Merriam-Webster on starlight

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with starlight

Spanish Central: Translation of starlight

Nglish: Translation of starlight for Spanish Speakers

Comments on starlight

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to enclose within walls

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