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From Middle English gliteren, from Old Norse glitra.



glitter (countable and uncountable, plural glitters)

  1. A bright, sparkling light; shininess or brilliance.
    • 1913, Mary Averill, Japanese flower arrangement Chapter 20
      This to them seems most like mother earth in color, and therefore best, as it is, to enhance the beauty of flowers instead of detracting from their exquisite shades. What a contrast to the glitter and show of our silver vases, which represent generally little else but their cost.
    • 1841, Charles Dickens, Barnaby Rudge Chapter 57
      As yet there had been no symptom of the news having any better foundation than in the fears of those who brought it, but The Boot had not been deserted five minutes, when there appeared, coming across the fields, a body of men who, it was easy to see, by the glitter of their arms and ornaments in the sun, and by their orderly and regular mode of advancing
  2. A shiny, decorative adornment, sometimes sprinkled on glue to make simple artwork.
  3. (figuratively) Glitz.


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glitter (third-person singular simple present glitters, present participle glittering, simple past and past participle glittered)

  1. To sparkle with light; to shine with a brilliant and broken light or showy luster; to gleam.
    a glittering sword
    the glittering ornaments on a Christmas tree
    • Dryden
      The field yet glitters with the pomp of war.
  2. To be showy, specious, or striking, and hence attractive.
    the glittering scenes of a court

Derived termsEdit




glitter m (uncountable)

  1. glitter (shiny, decorative adornment)



Probably from Old Norse glitra.


glitter n (uncountable)

  1. glitter; a shiny, decorative adornment


Related termsEdit