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

  • noun A sudden burst of sunlight, as through broken clouds.
  • noun A pattern or design consisting of a central disk with radiating spires projecting in the manner of sunbeams.
  • noun A jeweled brooch with such a design.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A strong outburst of sunlight; a resplendent beaming of the sun through rifted clouds; hence, in pyrotechny, an imitation of such an effect.
  • noun Hence, a figure, or object, as in architectural ornamentation, jewelry, etc., resembling, or thought to resemble, the bursting forth of rays in all directions from the sun: as, a diamond sunburst.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A burst of sunlight.

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

  • noun A figure or shape showing rays radiating from a central point.

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

  • noun a sudden emergence of the sun from behind clouds
  • noun a jeweled brooch with a pattern resembling the sun
  • noun a design consisting of a central disk resembling the sun and rays emanating from it


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The effect is that of a single large ornament; a round breastpin, or what is now called a sunburst, of jewels, with three large pendants beneath.

    Mont-Saint-Michel and Chartres

  • The Fender guitar is a classic in American rock bands, and Malmberg's guitar is emblematic of the type, with a yellow body that fades to deep orange and then black, what's known as a "sunburst" pattern. rss feed

  • One type are called sunburst beads, but are also known as paddlewheel beads, snowflake beads, or starburst beads.


  • See five great options and a brief history of the 'sunburst' style over the centuries.

    The Sunburst Mirror

  • And the second is the funky new 'sunburst' design:

    Summer Lanterns.

  • And the second is the funky new 'sunburst' design:

    Archive 2009-06-01

  • In the mid-1990s, not long after Mrs. Onassis passed on, Caroline and her brother, the late John, Jr., put many Kennedy family favorites up for auction, including their mother's ubiquitous three stranded-pearl necklace and their father's golf clubs, but for reasons only known to mother and daughter, the "sunburst" piece survived the cut.

    Stephanie Green: Revisiting One Of Jackie O's Crown Jewels

  • With funky 'sunburst', go-faster type stripes and swirls that look more swirly and full of win.

    Summer Lanterns.

  • With funky 'sunburst', go-faster type stripes and swirls that look more swirly and full of win.

    Archive 2009-06-01

  • The shops, each retaining many original 1920s art-deco features such as tiling, 'sunburst' lights and engraved glass features are time capsules of suburban shopping from nearly a century ago.

    Archive 2008-05-01


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