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[en-lahy-vuh n] /ɛnˈlaɪ vən/
verb (used with object)
to make vigorous or active; invigorate:
The wit of Mencken enlivened his age.
to make sprightly or cheerful; brighten:
Flowers enliven any room.
1625-35; obsolete enlive to give life to (en-1 + life) + -en1
Related forms
enlivener, noun
enliveningly, adverb
enlivenment, noun
unenlivened, adjective
unenlivening, adjective
1. animate, inspirit, vivify, stimulate, quicken. 2. gladden. See cheer.
2. depress. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for enlivened
  • The spray enlivened the animals' immune systems and made antibiotics much more effective.
  • Mercifully, it's a supremely readable book, enlivened by weird science and slap-shot one-liners.
  • They are only enlivened by technical hitches and the occasional political rant by a drunken winner.
  • It has brought a wide variety of people together for a common purpose and has enlivened the counties.
  • It's been a good day, enlivened by another two-hour encounter with a group of fearless chimps.
  • When the acidity is present, the wine is in better balance and your palate is enlivened.
  • Service was family-style, enlivened by lots of wine-toting table hoppers.
  • But the forthcoming summer may be enlivened by the presence of these prodigious talents.
  • The hotel has five reasonably priced rooms and occupies a plain, two-story building enlivened by blue shutters.
  • Dress varied somewhat, but was generally dark and serious, enlivened occasionally by candy green galoshes.
British Dictionary definitions for enlivened


verb (transitive)
to make active, vivacious, or spirited; invigorate
to make cheerful or bright; gladden or brighten
Derived Forms
enlivener, noun
enlivening, adjective
enlivenment, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for enlivened



1630s, "give life to" (enlive in same sense is from 1590s); see en- (1) "make, put in" + life + -en (1). Meaning "make lively or cheerful" is from 1690s. Related: Enlivened; enlivening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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