- 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.Licensed from iStockPhoto
Origin: Middle 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
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intransitive verb glis·tened, glis·ten·ing, glis·tens
Origin: Middle English glisnen, from Old English glisnian; see ghel-2 in Indo-European roots.