great brightness; luster: the brilliance of a fine diamond.
excellence or distinction; conspicuous talent, mental ability, etc.
splendor, elegance, or magnificence: the brilliance of the court of Louis XIV.
Optics. that luminance of a body consisting of its saturation and brightness.

Origin of brilliance

First recorded in 1745–55; brilli(ant) + -ance
Related formso·ver·bril·liance, noun

Synonyms for brilliance

Antonyms for brilliance

1, 2. dullness. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for brilliance

Contemporary Examples of brilliance

Historical Examples of brilliance

British Dictionary definitions for brilliance




great brightness; radiance
excellence or distinction in physical or mental ability; exceptional talent
splendour; magnificencethe brilliance of the royal court
physics a former term for luminance
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 brilliance

1755, from brilliant + -ance. Figurative sense (of wit, intelligence, etc.) is from 1779. Distinguished from brilliancy in that the latter usually is applied to things measurable in degrees.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper