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  • IPA(key): /ˈɡlɪtəɹɪŋ/
  • Audio (US):(file)



  1. present participle and gerund of glitter


glittering (comparative more glittering, superlative most glittering)

  1. Brightly sparkling.
    • 1813, Percy Bysshe Shelley, “Canto I”, in Queen Mab; , London: P. B. Shelley, , →OCLC, page 6:
      [T]he fair star / That gems the glittering coronet of morn, / Sheds not a light so mild, so powerful, / As that which, bursting from the Fairy's form, / Spread a purpureal halo round the scene, / Yet with an undulating motion, / Swayed to her outline gracefully.
    • 1907 August, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, “His Own People”, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, →OCLC, page 6:
      It was flood-tide along Fifth Avenue; motor, brougham, and victoria swept by on the glittering current; pretty women glanced out from limousine and tonneau; young men of his own type, silk-hatted, frock-coated, the crooks of their walking sticks tucked up under their left arms, passed on the Park side.
  2. (figuratively) Valuable, desirable.
    • 1994, Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela, London: Abacus, published 2010, page 85:
      Gaur was an example of a man without a BA who seemed infinitely better educated than the fellows who left Fort Hare with glittering degrees.
    • 2021 December 29, Stephen Roberts, “Stories and facts behind railway plaques: Chester (1848)”, in Rail, number 947, page 57:
      There are some glittering stats out there regarding Brassey: namely that he'd built around one-third of Britain's railways by the time he was in his early 40s, and that by the time of his death (aged 65) he was responsible for around one-twentieth of the world's railways.


Derived terms



glittering (plural glitterings)

  1. The appearance of something that glitters.
    • a. 1705, John Locke, “Of the Conduct of the Understanding”, in Posthumous Works of Mr. John Locke: , London: A and J Churchill, , published 1706, →OCLC:
      Every man carries about him a touchstone, if he will make use of it, to distinguish substantial gold from superficial glitterings, truth from appearances.