• synonyms


verb (used with or without object), il·lu·mined, il·lu·min·ing.
  1. to illuminate.
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Origin of illumine

1300–50; Middle English illuminen < Latin illūmināre to light up, equivalent to il- il-1 + lūmin- (stem of lūmen) light + -ā- thematic vowel + -re infinitive suffix
Related formsil·lu·mi·na·ble, adjectiveself-il·lu·mined, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

light, irradiate, illuminate, brighten, clarify, interpret, elucidate

Examples from the Web for illumined

Historical Examples

  • As he stood there, illumined by the rising moon, he seemed colossal.

    Tiverton Tales

    Alice Brown

  • The next instant the valley was illumined by a transparent glow.

    Slaves of Mercury

    Nat Schachner

  • A large lamp, placed on the writing-table, illumined this strange vigil.

  • Miss Horton's mind was illumined by her knowledge of herself.

    Mistress Wilding

    Rafael Sabatini

  • They consist of fancies that have illumined the hard facts of life.

British Dictionary definitions for illumined


  1. a literary word for illuminate
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Derived Formsilluminable, adjective

Word Origin

C14: from Latin illūmināre to make light; see illuminate
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 illumined



late 14c., "to enlighten spiritually;" mid-15c., "to light up, shine light on," from Old French illuminer, from Latin illuminare (see illumination). Related: illumined.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper