- The definition of glisten is to reflect light, sparkle, shine or glitter.
When a diamond reflects and sparkles in the sunlight, this is an example of a time when the diamond glistens.
A shrub glistening with ice.
Origin of glistenMiddle English glistnen (with unhistoric -t-) ; from Old English glisnian ; from base of glisian, to shine ; from Indo-European an unverified form ghleis- ; from base an unverified form ĝhel- from source gleam, glass
intransitive verbglis·tened, glis·ten·ing, glis·tens
- To shine by reflection with a sparkling luster: “Sweat &ellipsis; trickled in streams down his face and glistened in his beard” (Lois Lowry). See Synonyms at flash.
- To be reflected with a sparkling luster: “The sun glistened upon his hair” (Robert Louis Stevenson).
Origin of glistenMiddle English glisnen, from Old English glisnian; see ghel-2 in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present glistens, present participle glistening, simple past and past participle glistened)
From Old English glisnian.