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[sahyd-lahyt] /ˈsaɪdˌlaɪt/
an item of incidental information.
either of two lights carried by a vessel under way at night, a red one on the port side and a green on the starboard.
light coming from the side.
a window or other aperture for light in the side of a building, ship, etc.
a window at the side of a door or another window.
Origin of sidelight
First recorded in 1600-10; side1 + light1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for side-light
Historical Examples
  • Isabel went into the dark entry, and pressed her face against the side-light.

    Tiverton Tales Alice Brown
  • Perhaps the reader may be interested in a side-light on this subject.

    Plotinos: Complete Works, v. 4 Plotinos (Plotinus)
  • It is only by a side-light that any connection between the saint and the custom can be traced.

    The Royal Mail James Wilson Hyde
  • Emerson has treated this matter partially and from a sort of side-light.

    The English Novel Sidney Lanier
  • He is one of the characters that throw a side-light on our lives.

  • I asked, more and more puzzled—in the hope of some side-light on the matter.

    Lilith George MacDonald
  • It was the side-light of grace on affliction involuntarily comprehended, from long training, by the exterior faculties.

    The Debtor Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
  • Henrietta was not in his confidence, though he was in hers, and Isabel consequently received no side-light upon his state of mind.

  • This first day afforded a side-light upon the masters peculiarities.

    Wagner as I Knew Him Ferdinand Christian Wilhelm Praeger
  • From the pane nearest the fire a side-light fell across a man's figure leaning against the corner of the mantel-shelf.

    Six Women Victoria Cross
British Dictionary definitions for side-light


light coming from the side
a side window
either of the two navigational running lights used by vessels at night, a red light on the port and a green on the starboard
(Brit) either of two small lights on the front of a motor vehicle, used to indicate the presence of the vehicle at night rather than to assist the driver
additional or incidental information
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for side-light



also side-light, c.1600, "light coming from the side," from side (adj.) + light (n.). Figurative meaning "incidental information on a subject" is attested from 1862.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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