1. A sparkling or glistening light.
2. Brilliant or showy, often superficial attractiveness.
3. Small pieces of light-reflecting decorative material.
intr.v. glit·tered, glit·ter·ing, glit·ters
1. To sparkle brilliantly; glisten: a gold ring that glittered in the display window; eyes that glittered with tears. See Synonyms at flash.
2. To be reflected as a sparkling or glistening light: The sun glittered on the snow.
[Middle English gliteren, to sparkle, from Old Norse glitra; see ghel-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.