Definition of heighten in English:



  • 1Make or become more intense.

    [with object] ‘the pleasure was heightened by the sense of guilt that accompanied it’
    ‘the heightened colour of her face’
    [no object] ‘concern over CFCs has heightened’
    • ‘Formality does not freeze emotion but heightens it.’
    • ‘To receive a letter like this, is, at the best of times, distressing, but being a carer as well heightens the distress.’
    • ‘Cheery yellow flower heads nod all around me, their colours heightened.’
    • ‘For some, time sped up, senses heightened and they lost awareness of their bodies.’
    • ‘It's a design flaw in the writing that blurs distinctions between members of the cast and heightens the claustrophobic atmosphere which frequently threatens to suffocate the show's many fine qualities.’
    • ‘And this heightens concern among insolvency experts that the legal change has encouraged significantly more people to apply for bankruptcy as a way out of their personal debts.’
    • ‘Turning points separate the acts, change the course of the story and often heighten the drama by raising the stakes.’
    • ‘Eye contact reassures him, but also heightens his urgency.’
    • ‘This laborious technique allows the precision of colour that suggests dawn or dusk, mist or drizzle, the veil over the landscape that heightens sensory experience.’
    • ‘Lighting effects are unparalleled, the textures never appear blocky or blurry, and the performances by the character models really heightens the atmosphere.’
    • ‘As such, the facial features of almost all of the actors are that much more defined, which only serves to heighten and intensify the performances.’
    • ‘It was a touch maddening (something I have to live with anyway) not hearing it all, but this only heightens the excitement for the time when I finally get the whole story.’
    • ‘That this seemingly accidental self-portrait does not behave as self-portraits are supposed to only heightens its effect.’
    • ‘The viewers know what's going on, because they can see the player's cards (a glass table is used with cameras underneath), and once you're let in on that, it heightens the excitement.’
    • ‘The intervention of such a senior politician on his behalf only heightens our concerns.’
    • ‘There's something about the friendly nature of the place, the predominance of music, and the idyllic beauty of the shores and the surf, that heightens the joy of living.’
    • ‘It heightens the awareness of what you have and haven't got.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, the effect - which heightens the superficiality of the film - distances viewers from the action as opposed to pulling them into it.’
    • ‘They do not faint, but the art work heightens their attentiveness, and at the same time makes them recall important things in their personal lives.’
    • ‘The colors looked brighter, offensive and sharp on our senses, piqued and heightened.’
    intensify, increase, enhance, make greater, add to, raise, augment, boost, strengthen, sharpen, deepen, magnify, amplify, reinforce
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  • 2[with object] Make (something) higher.

    ‘the stage will be extended, heightening the grid by 3.4 metres’
    make higher, raise, lift, lift up, elevate, upraise
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