from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The state or quality of being brilliant, as.
  • noun Extreme brightness.
  • noun Exceptional clarity and agility of intellect or invention.
  • noun Splendor; magnificence.
  • noun Music Sharpness and clarity of tone.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The quality of being brilliant; great brightness; splendor; luster: as, the brilliance of the diamond.
  • noun Figuratively, remarkable excellence or distinction; admirable or splendid quality or qualities; absolutely, conspicuous mental ability or an exhibition of it.
  • noun Synonyms Effulgence, Luster, etc. See radiance.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The quality of being exceptionally effulgent (giving off light).
  • noun The quality of having extraordinary mental capacity.
  • noun chiefly UK Magnificence; resplendence.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a light within the field of vision that is brighter than the brightness to which the eyes are adapted
  • noun unusual mental ability
  • noun the quality of being magnificent or splendid or grand


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • The Randy Moss trade was an exercise in brilliance from the New England head coach.

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  • NO ONE will think that my brilliance is as brilliant as my Daddy did. most importantly

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  • And thus by degrees was lit, half – way down the spine, which is the seat of the soul, not that hard little electric light which we call brilliance, as it pops in and out upon our lips, but the more profound, subtle and subterranean glow which is the rich yellow flame of rational intercourse.

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  • It seems that President Obama's most recent evidence of economic brilliance is the initiation of a tariff on tires from China, the Chinese response is to claim protectionism and place tariffs on chicken meat and auto parts, what brilliance!

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  • To fall in defeat to such brilliance is somewhat easier to swallow than the travesty that took place in the Best Actor category, where Al Pacino, Dustin Hoffman, Jack Nicholson, and Albert Finney all watched in stunned amazement along with the world as Art Carney went up to collect his prize.

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  • Just the one who compiled it, but the real brilliance comes from the authors of the tips.

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  • I think some of the brilliance comes from the possibility that “tools” could reference BOTH the means to get things done, and the douchebaggery of the associated members.

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  • Indeed the boy bears out my own feeling that such premature intellectual brilliance is a form of physiological ventriloquism where the child channels the voice of the man, a voice not yet his own, and expresses thoughts he has not yet earned the rightto.

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  • Its brilliance is in execution rather than originality.

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  • Contemporary Harvard graduate students came to match in brilliance the new Harvard faculty.

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