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alight

1
[uh-lahyt]
verb (used without object), a·light·ed or a·lit, a·light·ing.
  1. to dismount from a horse, descend from a vehicle, etc.
  2. to settle or stay after descending: The bird alighted on the tree.
  3. to encounter or notice something accidentally.
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Origin of alight

1
before 1000; Middle English alighten, Old English ālīhtan, equivalent to ā- a-3 + līhtan to relieve (originally an animal mount) of weight, light2)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for alighting

disembark, descend, perch, light, settle, dismount, debark

Examples from the Web for alighting

Contemporary Examples of alighting

Historical Examples of alighting


British Dictionary definitions for alighting

alight

1
verb alights, alighting, alighted or alit (intr)
  1. (usually foll by from) to step out (of) or get down (from)to alight from a taxi
  2. to come to rest; settle; landa thrush alighted on the wall
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Word Origin for alight

Old English ālīhtan, from a- ² + līhtan to make less heavy, from līht light ²

alight

2
adjective, adverb (postpositive)
  1. burning; on fire
  2. illuminated; lit up
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Word Origin for alight

Old English ālīht lit up, from ālīhtan to light up; see light 1
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

Word Origin and History for alighting

alight

v.

"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.

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alight

adj.

"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.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper