inflammation of the skin caused by overexposure to the sun or a sunlamp.

verb (used with or without object), sun·burned or sun·burnt, sun·burn·ing.

to affect or be affected with sunburn: An hour in the sun sunburned me severely. I sunburn easily.

Origin of sunburn

First recorded in 1520–30; sun + burn1
Related formsun·sun·burned, adjectiveun·sun·burnt, adjectivewell-sun·burned, adjectivewell-sun·burnt, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for sunburnt

brown, burned, adust, suntanned

Examples from the Web for sunburnt

Contemporary Examples of sunburnt

  • By day's end, you were bone dry, sunburnt and cut all over from corn burn.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Yes, Kids Need 'Shitty' Jobs

    Justin Green

    January 28, 2013

  • Set in a castle in the Italian town of Montale, the novel is mostly something of a sunburnt idyll by the pool.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Martin Amis' Sexual Revolution

    Olivia Cole

    May 10, 2010

Historical Examples of sunburnt

  • George's colour mounted high in his sunburnt, freckled cheek.

    Two Penniless Princesses

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • Then, very gently, he laid one sunburnt hand upon her shoulder.

    The Golden Woman

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • They had not had time to get sunburnt, as those of fish earlier arrived at Clemente.

  • He was sunburnt; but his countenance was noble and manly, and marked with self-reliance.

    Winning His Way

    Charles Carleton Coffin

  • She looked at the boyish, interested, sunburnt face so near to her own, and hesitated.

    Devil's Ford

    Bret Harte

British Dictionary definitions for sunburnt



inflammation of the skin caused by overexposure to the sunTechnical name: erythema solare
another word for suntan
Derived Formssunburnt or sunburned, adjective
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 sunburnt



1520s, from sun (n.) + burn (v.). Sunburnt (c.1400) is older than sunburned (c.1500, sunne y-brent). As a noun from 1650s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

sunburnt in Medicine




Inflammation and erythema of the skin, often with blistering, caused by overexposure to the ultraviolet rays of direct sunlight.
Related formssunburn′ v.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.