One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A flash or sparkle of light.
glint, glistening, flicker, twinkle, sparkle, flash, flare, glare, gleam, glow, glimmer, lustre, glitter, dancing, blinking, winkingView synonyms
- ‘What a whirl, what a swirl, what a syncopating scintillation of networking, flirting and aerobic socializing this week mixes up!’
- ‘It's just that they sound almost too well-rehearsed for this kind of repertoire: Russian passion meeting Germanic scintillation not quite equalling true jazz.’
- ‘It is continuing the six-stringed scintillation that originated on the band's first effort.’
- ‘I climb here, gazing round, above, beneath, wholly encompassed by the ocean's scene; and there I send the gods supreme oblation, scattered beyond in jeweled scintillation over the depths, disdainful and serene.’
- ‘The dragon shattered into the shadows as the scintillation of explosive elemental forces raced out and away from the impact.’
- 1.1 The process or state of emitting flashes of light.
- ‘There is an oscillation which causes an impression of scintillation over the area.’
- 1.2Physics A small flash of visible or ultraviolet light emitted by fluorescence in a phosphor when struck by a charged particle or high-energy photon.
shine, lustre, gloss, sheenView synonyms
- ‘I loved to hold its face close to mine in the dark and watch the scintillations produced every time a radium nucleus decayed.’
- ‘Unlike other carbon-dating methods that monitor scintillations produced by radioactive decay, the TAMS method counts the actual number of carbon isotope atoms in a sample.’
- ‘More recently, astrophysicists explained the intraday variability in luminosity as a scintillation in the interstellar medium rather than rapid quasar rotation.’
- 1.3Astronomy The twinkling of the stars, caused by the earth's atmosphere diffracting starlight unevenly.
- ‘They were looking for a differential shift of less than one second of arc; even on a perfectly still night, the amount of scintillation or blurring shown by stars due to atmospheric turbulence is of this order.’
- ‘Light and radio waves get refracted in a phenomenon known as ionospheric scintillation (similar to the way light is refracted by water, such that a pencil looks bent when it is halfsubmerged in a glass of water).’
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