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[suhn-shahyn] /ˈsʌnˌʃaɪn/
the shining of the sun; direct light of the sun.
brightness or radiance; cheerfulness or happiness.
a source of cheer or happiness.
the effect of the sun in lighting and heating a place.
a place where the direct rays of the sun fall.
of or relating to sunshine laws:
sunshine rules.
fair-weather (def 2).
1200-50; Middle English sunnesin; see sun, shine
Related forms
sunshineless, adjective
sunshiny, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for sunshine
  • Weak rays of sunshine filter through the skylight, illuminating student drawings and paintings on the walls.
  • In the kitchen, new oversized windows and skylights invite in the sunshine.
  • Now, new oversize windows and skylights invite in the sunshine.
  • The body has been on the road decomposing under rain and sunshine.
  • With water and sunshine, it can grow tall and strong.
  • If you count the sunny and the cloudy days of the whole year, you will find that the sunshine predominates.
  • The sunshine of a northern summer was coming to its lovely end.
  • First, then, trees or tree-spirits are believed to give rain and sunshine.
  • Nature allows no one to claim as property the sunshine, the air, or the water.
  • The roofing material withstands inclement weather and, on bright days, taps sunshine for electricity.
British Dictionary definitions for sunshine


the light received directly from the sun
the warmth from the sun
a sunny area
a light-hearted or ironic term of address
Derived Forms
sunshiny, adjective
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 sunshine

mid-13c., from sun (n.) + shine (n.). Sunshine law in reference to U.S. open meeting legislation is recorded from 1972, from the notion of shining the light of public access on deliberations formerly held behind closed doors.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for sunshine

Sunset Strip

noun phrase

A section of Los Angeles, along Sunset Boulevard, frequented by alienated teenagers, drug users, derelicts, and other sub-and counterculture persons (1962+)



Sunglasses; shades (1965+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Encyclopedia Article for sunshine


solar radiation that is visible at the Earth's surface. The amount of sunlight is dependent on the extent of the daytime cloud cover. Some places on the Earth receive more than 4,000 hours per year of sunlight (more than 90 percent of the maximum possible), as in the Sahara; others receive less than 2,000 hours, as in regions of frequent storminess, such as Scotland and Iceland. Over much of the middle-latitude region of the world, the amount of sunlight varies regularly as the day progresses, owing to greater cloud cover in the early morning and during the late afternoon.

Learn more about sunlight with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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