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gleam

[gleem] /glim/
noun
1.
a flash or beam of light:
the gleam of a lantern in the dark.
2.
a dim or subdued light.
3.
a brief or slight manifestation or occurrence; trace:
a gleam of hope.
verb (used without object)
4.
to send forth a gleam or gleams.
5.
to appear suddenly and clearly like a flash of light.
Origin of gleam
1000
before 1000; (noun) Middle English glem(e), Old English glǣm; cognate with Old High German gleimo glowworm; akin to Old Saxon glīmo brightness; (v.) Middle English, derivative of the noun See glimmer, glimpse
Related forms
gleamingly, adverb
gleamless, adjective
outgleam, verb (used with object)
ungleaming, adjective
Synonyms
1. Gleam, glimmer, beam, ray are terms for a stream of light. Gleam denotes a not very brilliant, intermittent or nondirectional stream of light. Glimmer indicates a nondirectional light that is feeble and unsteady: a faint glimmer of moonlight. Beam usually means a directional, and therefore smaller, stream: the beam from a searchlight. Ray usually implies a still smaller amount of light than a beam, a single line of light: a ray through a pinprick in a window shade. 4. shine, glimmer, flash, glitter, sparkle, beam.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for gleamed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • They all had abundant, curling hair which gleamed like dull gold in the sunshine, that tinted everything.

    The Quest Frederik van Eeden
  • His hair was glued to his temples by the rain, which gleamed on his face.

    Roden's Corner Henry Seton Merriman
  • He pointed with a smile to a turreted nunnery, and his eyes narrowed and gleamed.

    War and Peace Leo Tolstoy
  • The black eyes of Monsieur de Boisdhyver gleamed unpleasantly.

    The Inn at the Red Oak Latta Griswold
  • The old possibility that he might turn out an impostor after all gleamed across his mind.

    The Wizard's Son, Vol. 1(of 3) Margaret Oliphant
  • As she stood in the one, gazing at the other, truer relationship had gleamed.

    Howards End E. M. Forster
  • Behind her was the dark stove and above it a row of copper kettles that gleamed through the bluish obscurity.

    Three Soldiers John Dos Passos
  • She raised her face, which gleamed in the twilight like a puff-ball.

    Howards End E. M. Forster
  • At last, with a scream of joy, he touched some soft close wool that gleamed white as the white snow.

    Findelkind Louise de la Ramee (AKA Ouida)
British Dictionary definitions for gleamed

gleam

/ɡliːm/
noun
1.
a small beam or glow of light, esp reflected light
2.
a brief or dim indication: a gleam of hope
verb (intransitive)
3.
to send forth or reflect a beam of light
4.
to appear, esp briefly: intelligence gleamed in his eyes
Derived Forms
gleaming, adjective
gleamy, adjective
gleamingly, adverb
Word Origin
Old English glǣm; related to Old Norse gljā to flicker, Old High German gleimo glow-worm, glīmo brightness, Old Irish glē bright
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 gleamed

gleam

n.

Old English glæm "brilliant light; brightness, splendor, radiance," from Proto-Germanic *glaimiz (cf. Old Saxon glimo "brightness;" Middle High German glim "spark," gleime "glowworm;" German glimmen "to glimmer, glow;" Old Norse glija "to shine, glitter"), from root *glim-, from PIE *ghel- "to shine, glitter, glow" (see glass).

v.

early 13c., from gleam (n). Related: Gleamed; gleaming.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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