- to dismount from a horse, descend from a vehicle, etc.
- to settle or stay after descending: The bird alighted on the tree.
- to encounter or notice something accidentally.
Origin of alight1
- provided with light; lighted up.
- on fire; burning.
Origin of alight2
Examples from the Web for alight
The grapevine and the international media were alight with the buzz of the student killed by the police during the demonstration.How Havel Inspired the Velvet Revolution
December 6, 2014
His eyes were alight; his opinions in keeping with a man who had named his daughter The Human Being Is More Precious Than Gold.Kofi Awoonor, the Ghanaian Poet Killed in Westgate Mall Attack
September 24, 2013
In Buenos Aires they overturned cars and then set them alight.Argentina Erupts Over Acquittal in Marita Verón Case
Scott C. Johnson
December 14, 2012
On the eve of the Amanda Knox appellate verdict decision, Perugia was alight with a sort of surreal buzz.Judgment Day for Knox
Barbie Latza Nadeau
October 3, 2011
Mercury goes rogue again this week, causing your mind to wander and alight on the serious alterations you must make to your life.What the Stars Hold for Your Week, June 26-July 2, 2011
Starsky + Cox
June 26, 2011
Grace's face was alight with appreciation of Mrs. Gray's gift.Grace Harlowe's Return to Overton Campus
Jessie Graham Flower
Here, Garson paid the fare, and then helped the girl to alight, and on into the hallway.Within the Law
Nor when we alight at the Pas de Soucis are these features wanting.
At this point we alight, our water-way being blocked for nearly a mile.
Again we take a leap of about twenty years, and alight in the midst of the Revolution.Old News
- (usually foll by from) to step out (of) or get down (from)to alight from a taxi
- to come to rest; settle; landa thrush alighted on the wall
- burning; on fire
- illuminated; lit up
Word Origin and History for alight
"to descend, dismount," Old English alihtan, originally "to lighten, take off, take away," from a- "down, aside" (see a- (1)) + lihtan "get off, make light" (see light (v.)). The notion is of getting down off a horse or vehicle, thus lightening it. Of aircraft (originally balloons) from 1786. Related: Alighted; alighting.
"on fire," early 15c., apparently from Middle English aliht, past participle of alihton (Old English on-lihtan) "to light up," also "to shine upon" (see light (n.)).