sun·​beam ˈsən-ˌbēm How to pronounce sunbeam (audio)
: a ray of sunlight

Examples of sunbeam in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The film uses lockdown — the physical and mental isolation of it — as an exacerbating force on those already existing anti-social and oblivious tendencies, like a magnifying glass training a sunbeam on some gay ants. Rebecca Alter, Vulture, 18 Apr. 2024 In his emotionally shattering dramas ‘Secret Sunshine’ (2007) and ‘Poetry’ (2010), the director turned everyday images, such as a sunbeam striking a wall, into luminous existential riddles, challenging his characters to study them and glimpse the possibility of transcendence dwelling within. Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times, 26 Apr. 2024 As well as adding luminosity and the appearance of healthiness to the skin (timely after a long, drizzly winter), sunbeam blonde makes the hair look–as the name suggests–sun-kissed and natural. Hannah Coates, Vogue, 4 Apr. 2024 Leave the sunbeams shining through your windows to your pets and plants. Dave McIntyre, Washington Post, 28 Mar. 2024 On a frigid Wednesday afternoon, sunbeams poured into Maurice Sendak’s studio in Ridgefield, Conn., crisscrossing one another with the precision and warmth of the children’s books that were born in this room. Elisabeth Egan, New York Times, 1 Feb. 2024 Still, even if Sofia is brought low for a large part of the story, Brooks’ radiant performance is one of the chief sources of the movie’s levity, constantly breaking through like sunbeams through cloud. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 19 Dec. 2023 How Do Sharks See Underwater? Sharks, particularly species who operate in the deep zones of the ocean where sunbeams rarely penetrate the water, rely on their tapetum lucidum. Katie Liu, Discover Magazine, 26 Oct. 2023 The latest arrival is distinctly inspired by sunbeams–additionally, the line will be available in 18k yellow gold over silver. Robyn Mowatt, Essence, 3 Oct. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sunbeam.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sunbeam was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near sunbeam

Cite this Entry

“Sunbeam.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


sun·​beam -ˌbēm How to pronounce sunbeam (audio)
: a ray of sunlight

More from Merriam-Webster on sunbeam

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