brilliance

Brilliance is a quality of being intensely bright or vivid. City dwellers might be surprised at the brilliance of the stars in the night sky the first time they go camping in the mountains.

We can trace the noun brilliance back to a Latin root meaning "to shine like a precious stone," and now we use it do describe things that glow with light, shine with color, or sparkle with intelligence. The brilliance of your sister's red hair shining in the sun can't begin to compare with her brilliance on the school math team.

Definitions of brilliance
  1. noun
    a light within the field of vision that is brighter than the brightness to which the eyes are adapted
    synonyms: blaze, glare
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    type of:
    brightness
    the location of a visual perception along a continuum from black to white
  2. noun
    unusual mental ability
    synonyms: genius
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    types:
    coruscation
    a sudden or striking display of brilliance
    pyrotechnics
    (music) brilliance of display (as in the performance of music)
    scintillation
    a brilliant display of wit
    type of:
    intelligence
    the ability to comprehend; to understand and profit from experience
  3. noun
    the quality of being magnificent or splendid or grand
    “his `Hamlet' lacks the brilliance that one expects”
    synonyms: grandeur, grandness, magnificence, splendor, splendour
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    types:
    eclat
    brilliant or conspicuous success or effect
    type of:
    elegance
    a refined quality of gracefulness and good taste
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