Definition of twinkle in US English:

twinkle

verb

[no object]
  • 1(of a star or light, or a shiny object) shine with a gleam that varies repeatedly between bright and faint.

    ‘the lights twinkled in the distance’
    • ‘Glass shapes, baubles and coloured beads all hung from the ivy, twinkling in the sun's rays.’
    • ‘The stars twinkled and shined like they were the only thing to light up the Earth tonight.’
    • ‘There wasn't a soul in sight, only the bright stars twinkling above.’
    • ‘They were beautiful, twinkling in the dark sky above.’
    • ‘Glass fell, twinkling in the firelight like stardust dropping from the sky.’
    • ‘The sapphire twinkled in the setting sun's light.’
    • ‘The stars twinkled brightly in the night sky above her head.’
    • ‘They twinkled bright in the dark sky, beautiful and old and they made her unimportant.’
    • ‘The city looked peaceful, lights twinkling and the trees still in the balmy night.’
    • ‘By nightfall, several dozen boats will be out on the lake with their lanterns twinkling in the velvet darkness.’
    • ‘As he turned out the light, three bright stars twinkled above the silent house.’
    • ‘The stars twinkle under the bright light of the full moon.’
    • ‘Hundreds of small fish twinkled in the refracted sunlight.’
    • ‘The light gradually faded out of the cavern, leaving only shards of broken ice twinkling dimly in the darkness.’
    • ‘Outside the moon shone bright and the stars twinkled.’
    • ‘I could see the lights from the town twinkling in the distance.’
    • ‘There are some bright new southern stars twinkling as our northern lights try to recharge their batteries.’
    • ‘Stars twinkled merrily, their brief flashes of light competing with the steady glow of the moon.’
    • ‘A few stars twinkled through the light dark clouds.’
    • ‘Lights twinkled down below and a breeze rustled the trees.’
    glitter, sparkle, shine, glimmer, shimmer, glint, gleam, scintillate, glisten, flicker, flash, wink, blink
    glittering, sparkling, coruscating, glimmering, glinting, gleaming, glistening, flickering, winking
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    1. 1.1 (of a person's eyes) sparkle, especially with amusement.
      • ‘‘No prob’, she replied, her green eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘Lisa leaned forward eagerly, her eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘She looks at Ryan, her brown eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘He blinked his ebony black eyes, the irises twinkling with delight.’
      • ‘Frances nods, her dark eyes twinkling with either amusement or disbelief.’
      • ‘He had a broad, trusting smile, and eyes that twinkled with mischief.’
      • ‘Ryan prods, his eyes twinkling brightly with mischief.’
      • ‘The older pictures had MaryAnn smiling radiantly, teeth shining and eyes scrunched together twinkling with delight.’
      • ‘Her eye's started to twinkle with curiosity when she came across a black door.’
      • ‘Terry rolled his eyes, but the green orbs twinkled with amusement.’
      • ‘There stood Mr. Grunge, brown eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘She looks at Jonnie, with eyes twinkling in amusement.’
      • ‘He's sitting there, one eyebrow raised, his beautiful eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘Chris' eyes faltered for a moment, but continued to playfully twinkle during his levity.’
      • ‘Her eyes flashed and twinkled mysteriously, and she shot her gaze towards me.’
      • ‘‘I'll be looking forward to it,’ she replied, her ice blue eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘‘Look’, he said, his blue eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘One of the men gave a harsh laugh, his eyes twinkling with unspoken amusement.’
      • ‘The boy looked up, his dark blue eyes twinkling with amusement.’
      • ‘Zachary's eyes widened for a moment, but they soon twinkled with amusement.’
    2. 1.2 Smile so that one's eyes sparkle.
      ‘“Aha!” he said, twinkling at her’
      • ‘Take those tapes of Ronald Reagan's political speeches and memoirs, in which he smiled and twinkled and said not very much at all.’
      • ‘He stood with his arms folded and head cocked to one side, twinkling at me.’
      • ‘Alan beamed proudly and twinkled even more.’
      • ‘When I asked if he knew the location of the real Stone of Destiny he smiled, twinkled mischievously, and said all would be revealed in the fullness of time.’
      • ‘‘A close call,’ he twinkles (with arms akimbo and a smile reminiscent of Richard Branson's).’
    3. 1.3 (of a person's feet) move lightly and rapidly.
      ‘his sandaled feet twinkled over the ground’
      • ‘As principal dancer with the English National Ballet, her toes have to twinkle for a living.’
      • ‘The famous Gallowglass Ceili Band will provide the music with some lively tunes to get the toes twinkling.’
      • ‘Just the idea of twinkling my toes in the sand puts a smile on my face.’
      • ‘Playing the ball late, his feet started to twinkle.’
      • ‘Few players have such twinkling and quick feet and are balanced enough to switch the ball quickly between them.’
      run lightly, dart, dance, skip, flit, glide
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noun

  • 1A sparkle or gleam in a person's eyes.

    • ‘He nodded his agreement once again, and Drake thought he detected an impish twinkle dancing in his eyes.’
    • ‘Rachel glanced over at him and noticed the familiar mischievous twinkle in his eyes had returned.’
    • ‘A playful twinkle appeared in her emerald eyes.’
    • ‘A twinkle appeared in his eye, as though he thought me comical.’
    • ‘Jason looked at her with a twinkle of laughter in his eyes.’
    • ‘He blinked as he felt her breath on his neck, her brown eyes watching him with a playful twinkle.’
    • ‘A playful and teasing twinkle had come into her eye.’
    • ‘A twinkle of amusement and excitement gleamed in his olive colored eyes.’
    • ‘She rubbed my arm comfortingly with a small twinkle of mischief that I had seen somewhere else.’
    • ‘He nodded, an amused twinkle still evident in his eyes.’
    • ‘He had a huge grin on his face and his eyes had a twinkle to them.’
    • ‘She looked into his gorgeous, blue eyes that had a dull twinkle in them.’
    • ‘Tanner saw the twinkle of amusement in the elf's eyes as he briefly faced him.’
    • ‘A faint twinkle was present in his eye, which grew more noticeable when he spoke.’
    • ‘The familiar twinkle danced in her sparkling brown eyes.’
    • ‘His former amethyst eyes were now replaced by blood red ones, an evil twinkle passing through them.’
    • ‘There was a slight twinkle of humour in them.’
    • ‘I saw a mischievous twinkle in his eyes and he waved the salad.’
    • ‘A grin cracked across the man's stony face, and a twinkle gleamed from his eyes.’
    • ‘The amused twinkle wasn't quite gone from his eyes, but he was much more serious now.’
    glitter, sparkle, twinkling, glimmer, shimmer, glint, gleam, flicker, dazzle, flash, wink, blink
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    1. 1.1 A light which appears continually to grow brighter and fainter.
      ‘the distant twinkle of the lights’
      • ‘It was the size of a large classroom, and the light was provided by a small bulb above a shelf of bottles behind the bar, a light illuminating the tightly fitting pool table, and the twinkle of bulbs in the juke box.’
      • ‘Bright twinkles of stars had also started to emerge and the whole scene had become even more picturesque than previously.’
      • ‘Usually with all the lights in this city, you could barely see a twinkle in the sky.’
      • ‘You feel you could be in a theater which screens art films were it not for the twinkle of Christmas lights across a black curtain.’
      • ‘I unclench my fist, and a twinkle of reflected light shines back in my face.’
      • ‘The stars serenely encased the green-and-brown planet in their milky twinkle, lighting up all the oceans with a crystal glow, a beautiful shine.’
      • ‘A faint twinkle appeared under the mass of rubble occupying the centre part of the room.’
      • ‘Further still, and a twinkle of daylight breaks the distance.’
      • ‘The sun had almost set and already Auckland's lights were a twinkle in the distance.’
      • ‘The fire in his eyes flared and with a single hand he flipped the table halfway across the room, the teapot and cups shattering in a twinkle of light.’
      • ‘As she said this she clasped the bracelet and there was a bright twinkle of gold.’
      • ‘She looked out into the ocean, seeing the moonlight twinkle on the ocean surface as the waves slowly danced their way to shore.’
      • ‘After a time that seemed like forever, I began to see a small twinkle of light.’
      • ‘This time the light is the twinkle of candles picking up gold trim on china plates.’
      • ‘The twinkle of light began to grow and divide, until Peter could see a myriad of bright lights just up ahead.’
      • ‘At this depth the last rays of sunlight fail to penetrate the water and the only lights comes from life forms that produce twinkles and sparkles of primarily blue and green bioluminescence.’
      • ‘Adriana sat watching the glow of the dying fire and the golden twinkle of summer stars.’
      • ‘Tired twinkles of light came through the fissures in the roof tiles and a small window in the back wall.’
      • ‘He felt cold and damp, but was comforted to see the twinkle of torchlight in the distance.’
      light, brightness, gleam, glow, glint, glimmer, sparkle, flicker, glitter, glisten, shimmer, flash, dazzle, beam, flare, glare, radiance, illumination, luminescence, luminosity, incandescence, phosphorescence, fluorescence
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Origin

Old English twinclian (verb), of Germanic origin.

Pronunciation

twinkle

/ˈtwɪŋk(ə)l//ˈtwiNGk(ə)l/