twinkle

verb
twin·​kle | \ ˈtwiŋ-kəl How to pronounce twinkle (audio) \
twinkled; twinkling\ ˈtwiŋ-​k(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce twinkling (audio) \

Definition of twinkle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to shine with a flickering or sparkling light : scintillate
2a : to appear bright especially with merriment his eyes twinkled
b : to flutter the eyelids
3 : to flutter or flit rapidly

transitive verb

1 : to cause to shine with fluctuating light
2 : to flicker or flirt rapidly twinkled the straight, red-lacquered toes— Glenway Wescott

twinkle

noun

Definition of twinkle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an intermittent radiance : flicker, sparkle
2 : a rapid flashing motion : flit
3 : a wink of the eyelids
4 : the instant's duration of a wink : twinkling

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Other Words from twinkle

Verb

twinkler \ ˈtwiŋ-​k(ə-​)lər How to pronounce twinkler (audio) \ noun

Noun

twinkly \ ˈtwiŋ-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce twinkly (audio) \ adjective

Examples of twinkle in a Sentence

Verb

The lights of the city twinkled in the distance. Stars twinkle in the night sky. Her eyes twinkled with excitement.

Noun

We saw the twinkle of a candle in the window. in just a twinkle, the shooting star was gone
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Everyone is familiar with the standard holiday home decorations, from twinkling lights to menorahs and Christmas trees. Megan Barber, Curbed, "How to decorate your RV for the holidays," 6 Dec. 2018 At the splendid age of 100, Sevigny remains a wry, twinkling repository of anecdote and memory, an ageless witness to a golden era of design and hospitality. Hamish Bowles, Vogue, "An Exhibition in Tangier Pays Tribute to Design World Darling Charles Sevigny," 3 Aug. 2018 Make your style twinkle: mist a cloud of shimmer spray above your head and walk through it. Seventeen, "Instantly Update Your Look With Boho Twists," 18 Apr. 2012 Traveling during the summer to conduct field work, Shimomura studied bioluminescent fireworms in Bermuda, cave worms and limpets in New Zealand, and a plethora of glowing bacteria, twinkling fireflies and neon-colored squid and krill. Harrison Smith, The Seattle Times, "Osamu Shimomura, atomic blast survivor and Nobel-winning chemist, dies at 90," 23 Oct. 2018 Inside, among the twinkling holiday decorations and bustling shoppers, an intimate crowd gathered at Blue Ribbon Sushi to toast Tamara Mellon and her namesake luxury line. Vogue, "Kris Jenner, Zoe Saldana, Storm Reid, and More Toast Tamara Mellon," 14 Dec. 2018 Other inspiring evening hair cues came from Carrozzini’s twinkling vintage slide capturing her loose bun, and Emma Weymouth’s fresh white roses to match her Dolce & Gabbana. Vogue, "Claire Foy, Idris Elba, Anna Wintour, Sophie Okonedo, Ralph Fiennes, and the Cast of Hamilton Fete the 64th Evening Standard Theatre Awards," 19 Nov. 2018 Just imagine it for a moment: the sound of the crackling fire, the sight of snow flurries waltzing behind the window, the taste of warm eggnog, and the coziness of your family sitting beside your twinkling leg lamp. Diana Bruk, Country Living, "You Can Now Stay Overnight in the 'Christmas Story' House," 14 Aug. 2018 The Museum of Modern Art hosted the premiere, with lights twinkling in the courtyard as guests were ushered into the screening. Kate Klausner, Vogue, "Hugh Jackman Trades Wolverine for Politics at Last Night’s Premiere of The Front Runner," 31 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

This was before social media was even a twinkle in someone’s eye. Vogue, "Laura Morgan, the Artist and Cult Model, Is Back on Fashion’s Radar," 27 Dec. 2018 Our region needed these fundamentals long before HQ2 was a twinkle in anyone’s eye, and would need them whether or not Amazon existed. Alex Baca, Vox, "I work in urban planning. Now Amazon’s coming to my city.," 20 Nov. 2018 The girls — lacking any self-awareness — spouted off hilarious, meme-worthy quotes during a time when social media was just a twinkle in the internet’s eye. Marie Lodi, The Cut, "I Think About This a Lot: Ally Hilfiger’s Burrito Breakdown on Rich Girls," 18 June 2018 Highlight the twinkle in your eye with Natasha Denona Super Glow Highlighter, a dynamic luminizer that delivers an effortless, pearlized shimmer. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What August's Scorpio Horoscope Means for You," 30 July 2018 Untangling the tumbleweed of twinkle lights was like tiptoeing back in time. Al Kemp, The Seattle Times, "How I came to grips with a downsized Christmas," 12 Dec. 2018 Rihanna has been hosting the (almost) annual Diamond Ball, an event that benefits the Clara Lionel Foundation, since 2014 — long before Fenty Beauty was even a twinkle in the icon's eye. Marci Robin, Allure, "Rihanna Wore Fenty Beauty's New Diamond Bomb to the Diamond Ball, Of Course," 14 Sep. 2018 The warm twinkle of fairy lights around town, the vacation days, and, of course, the extra family time make some people feel all of the joy. Mattie Quinn, SELF, "10 Tips for Dealing With Family Estrangement During the Holidays," 21 Nov. 2018 String the twinkle lights through the holes and hide the extra wires in the box before replacing the back of the letter to close it up. Sarah Newell, Seventeen, "10 DIY Dorm Decor Hacks That Even Lazy Girls Can Do," 19 June 2017

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

Verb

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

Noun

1548, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for twinkle

Verb

Middle English, from Old English twinclian; akin to Middle High German zwinken to blink

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Statistics for twinkle

Last Updated

21 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for twinkle

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

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More Definitions for twinkle

twinkle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of twinkle

: to shine with an unsteady light : to produce small flashes of light
of the eyes : to have a friendly or happy expression

twinkle

verb
twin·​kle | \ ˈtwiŋ-kəl How to pronounce twinkle (audio) \
twinkled; twinkling

Kids Definition of twinkle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to shine or cause to shine with a flickering or sparkling light Stars twinkle in the sky.
2 : to appear bright with amusement His eyes twinkled at the joke.
3 : to move or flutter rapidly

twinkle

noun

Kids Definition of twinkle (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : a very short time

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More from Merriam-Webster on twinkle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with twinkle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for twinkle

Spanish Central: Translation of twinkle

Nglish: Translation of twinkle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of twinkle for Arabic Speakers

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