Synonyms of shimmer

(Entry 1 of 2)

to shoot forth bursts of light
  • a sequined dress shimmering under the studio lights

Synonyms for shimmer

Words Related to shimmer



Synonyms & Antonyms of shimmer (Entry 2 of 2)

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About shimmer

How does the verb shimmer contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of shimmer are flash, gleam, glimmer, glint, glisten, glitter, and sparkle. While all these words mean "to send forth light," shimmer means shining with a wavering light.

a shimmering satin dress

When is it sensible to use flash instead of shimmer?

The meanings of flash and shimmer largely overlap; however, flash implies a sudden outburst of bright light.

lightning flashed

When can gleam be used instead of shimmer?

While in some cases nearly identical to shimmer, gleam suggests a steady light seen through an obscuring medium or against a dark background.

lights gleamed in the valley

When could glimmer be used to replace shimmer?

In some situations, the words glimmer and shimmer are roughly equivalent. However, glimmer suggests a faint or wavering gleam.

a distant glimmering light

Where would glint be a reasonable alternative to shimmer?

The words glint and shimmer are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, glint implies a cold glancing light.

glinting steel

In what contexts can glisten take the place of shimmer?

The words glisten and shimmer can be used in similar contexts, but glisten applies to the soft sparkle from a wet or oily surface.

glistening wet sidewalk

When might glitter be a better fit than shimmer?

While the synonyms glitter and shimmer are close in meaning, glitter connotes a brilliant sparkling or gleaming.

glittering diamonds

When would sparkle be a good substitute for shimmer?

Although the words sparkle and shimmer have much in common, sparkle suggests innumerable moving points of bright light.

the sparkling waters

Learn More About shimmer

Time Traveler for shimmer

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Thesaurus Entries Near shimmer




See More Nearby Entries 

Cite this Entry

“Shimmer.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on shimmer

Nglish: Translation of shimmer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shimmer for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!