A gleam is a bright flash of light. If you were lost on a dark, stormy night, you'd be hugely relieved to see the gleam of a roadside diner's sign up ahead.

Use the verb gleam when something is shining as if it were wet or glinting with light. Your new toothpaste might make your teeth so white that they gleam. You can also describe an emotion that appears briefly as a gleam, like a gleam of hope. And as you hatch a plan to toilet-paper the neighbor's yard, mischief might gleam in your eyes.

Definitions of gleam
  1. noun
    a flash of light (especially reflected light)
    synonyms: gleaming, glimmer
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    type of:
    a sudden intense burst of radiant energy
  2. noun
    an appearance of reflected light
    synonyms: gleaming, glow, lambency
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    type of:
    effulgence, radiance, radiancy, refulgence, refulgency, shine
    the quality of being bright and sending out rays of light
  3. verb
    shine brightly, like a star or a light
    synonyms: glimmer
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    type of:
    cause to be seen by emitting light as if in rays
  4. verb
    be shiny, as if wet
    synonyms: glint, glisten, glitter, shine
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    glitter as if covered with spangles
    give off a shimmering reflection, as of silk
    type of:
    appear, look, seem
    give a certain impression or have a certain outward aspect
  5. verb
    appear briefly
    “A terrible thought gleamed in her mind”
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    type of:
    appear, come along
    come into being or existence, or appear on the scene
Word Family

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