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[ri-fuhl-juh nt]
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  1. shining brightly; radiant; gleaming: Crystal chandeliers and gilded walls made the opera house a refulgent setting for the ball.
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Origin of refulgent

First recorded in 1500–10, refulgent is from the Latin word refulgent- (stem of refulgēns, present participle of refulgēre to radiate light). See re-, fulgent
Related formsre·ful·gence, re·ful·gen·cy, re·ful·gent·ness, nounre·ful·gent·ly, adverbun·re·ful·gent, adjectiveun·re·ful·gent·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for refulgence

Historical Examples

  • If the children looked brilliant to Pop he did not reflect their refulgence.

    In a Little Town

    Rupert Hughes

  • Brock shone with a refulgence that bedimmed all expectations.

    The Husbands of Edith

    George Barr McCutcheon

  • Then suppose that after twenty-four hours the sun should burst upon us in all his refulgence and glorious magnificence.

    Biography of a Slave

    Charles Thompson

  • Her eyes were open now, and the refulgence falling around her from the burning cedar, seemed like the glory of heaven.

    Mabel's Mistake

    Ann S. Stephens

  • La Petite Mer is in full view, the opposite shore lost in the refulgence of a reflected glow, as if it were the open sea itself.

    Rambles on the Riviera

    Francis Miltoun

British Dictionary definitions for refulgence


  1. literary shining, brilliant, or radiant
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Derived Formsrefulgence or rare refulgency, nounrefulgently, adverb

Word Origin

C16: from Latin refulgēre to shine brightly, from re- + fulgēre to shine
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 refulgence


1630s, from Latin refulgentia "reflected luster, splendor," from refulgens (see refulgent). Related: Refulgency (1610s).

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c.1500, from Middle French refulgent or directly from Latin refulgentem (nominative refulgens), present participle of refulgere "flash back, shine brilliantly," from re- "back" (see re-) + fulgere "to shine" (see bleach (v.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper