a rare form of lightning, consisting of a bright, luminous ball that moves rapidly along objects or floats in the air.
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Also called globe lightning.
Origin of ball lightning
First recorded in 1855–60
Words nearby ball lightning
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021
Example sentences from the Web for ball lightning
The mergers of ball-lightning and meteorites are not resistances to us: our data are of enormous bodies.The Book of the Damned|Charles Fort
British Dictionary definitions for ball lightning
meteorol a luminous electrically charged ball occasionally seen during electrical storms
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
Scientific definitions for ball lightning
A rare form of lightning in the shape of a glowing red ball, associated with thunderstorms and sometimes accompanied by a loud noise. Ball lightning is thought to consist of ionized gas.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.