shimmer

[shim-er]

verb (used without object)

to shine with or reflect a subdued, tremulous light; gleam faintly.
to appear to quiver or vibrate in faint light or while reflecting heat waves.

noun

a subdued, tremulous light or gleam.
a quivering or vibrating motion or image as produced by reflecting faint light or heat waves.

Origin of shimmer

before 1100; Middle English schimeren, s(c)hemeren, Old English scimrian; cognate with Dutch schemeren, German schimmern to glisten
Related formsshim·mer·ing·ly, adverbun·shim·mer·ing, adjectiveun·shim·mer·ing·ly, adverb

Synonyms for shimmer

1. glimmer. See glisten.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for shimmer

Historical Examples of shimmer

  • They saw those rocks, through the shimmer of the surface glare.

    The Forest

    Stewart Edward White

  • Everything they do, everything they say, gets the colour and shimmer of the sea.

  • The trees outside were casting a shimmer of green through the sunshine in the room.

    Highacres

    Jane Abbott

  • There was a shimmer of light from the top and I took a closer look at it.

    The Repairman

    Harry Harrison

  • The blocks of ice flash and shimmer as they pass through the sunshine.

    Pipefuls

    Christopher Morley


British Dictionary definitions for shimmer

shimmer

verb

(intr) to shine with a glistening or tremulous light

noun

a faint, glistening, or tremulous light
Derived Formsshimmering, adjectiveshimmeringly, adverb

Word Origin for shimmer

Old English scimerian; related to Middle Low German schēmeren to grow dark, Old Norse skimi brightness
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 shimmer
v.

Old English scimerian "to glitter, shimmer, glisten, shine," related to (perhaps a frequentative of) scimian "to shine," from Proto-Germanic *skim- (cf. Swedish skimra, Dutch schemeren "to glitter," German schimmern), from PIE root *skai- "to gleam, to shine" (see shine (v.). Related: Shimmered; shimmering.

n.

"a tremulous light," 1821, from shimmer (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper