See more synonyms for enliven on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to make vigorous or active; invigorate: The wit of Mencken enlivened his age.
  2. to make sprightly or cheerful; brighten: Flowers enliven any room.

Origin of enliven

1625–35; obsolete enlive to give life to (en-1 + life) + -en1
Related formsen·liv·en·er, nounen·liv·en·ing·ly, adverben·liv·en·ment, nounun·en·liv·ened, adjectiveun·en·liv·en·ing, adjective

Synonyms for enliven

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Synonym study

2. See cheer.

Antonyms for enliven

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for enlivened

Contemporary Examples of enlivened

Historical Examples of enlivened

  • He enlivened the excursion by his laughter and strength of a peasant.

    Therese Raquin

    Emile Zola

  • The journey to the Calvin cottage was enlivened by frequent stops for refreshment.

    The Portygee

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • At times the proceedings have been enlivened by sparkling humour.

  • All festal occasions in Circassian life are enlivened by the presence of the minstrel.

    Life of Schamyl

    John Milton Mackie

  • At this moment the chamber was enlivened by the presence of many individuals.


    Benjamin Disraeli

British Dictionary definitions for enlivened


verb (tr)
  1. to make active, vivacious, or spirited; invigorate
  2. to make cheerful or bright; gladden or brighten
Derived Formsenlivener, nounenlivening, adjectiveenlivenment, noun
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 enlivened



1630s, "give life to" (enlive in same sense is from 1590s); see en- (1) "make, put in" + life + -en (1). Meaning "make lively or cheerful" is from 1690s. Related: Enlivened; enlivening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper