There are 2 main definitions of glance in English:

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glance 1

Line breaks: glance
Pronunciation: /ɡlɑːns/


[no object, with adverbial of direction]
1Take a brief or hurried look: Ginny glanced at her watch
More example sentences
  • I saw him frown and I watched, as it grew deeper when he glanced at me for a moment before glancing back down at the photo.
  • I glanced at a kid that looked about my age who was glancing around nervously until he saw me looking at him and gave me a hard look.
  • He gave a sigh of relief as she glanced at him and gave him a small smile, then glanced back down at the floor and blushed.
take a quick look, look quickly, look briefly, peek, peep;
glimpse, catch a glimpse of;
Scottish  keek
informal sneak a look, take a gander
British informal take a dekko, have a shufti, take a butcher's
Australian/New Zealand informal squiz
archaic glance one's eye
1.1 (glance at/through) Read quickly or cursorily: I glanced through your personnel file last night
More example sentences
  • Thus, by just taking a cursory glance through the list one notices that alloy steel has larger industrial applications in each of the segments as raw materials.
  • Having this in your wallet will allow you to quickly glance at it before parting with your money.
  • I haven't read it, but glancing through it, there are some pretty objectionable statements.
read quickly, scan, have a quick look, run one's eye over;
skim, leaf, flick, flip, thumb, browse;
dip into
informal give something a/the once-over
2Hit something at an angle and bounce off obliquely: the stone glanced off a crag and hit Tom on the head
More example sentences
  • Instead, they glance off walls at 200 mph, looking showroom fresh.
  • First, the axes glance off the tree, the wood is so hard to cut.
  • The wooden shaft was flitted with small bits of steel and iron, so it could glance off blades and other things without being split or cut.
ricochet, rebound, be deflected;
fly, bounce;
graze, clip, make contact with;
Billiards & Pool  cannon, carom
rare resile
2.1(Of light) reflect off something with a brief flash: sunlight glanced off the curved body of a dolphin
More example sentences
  • A ray of sunlight glanced off the walls of the castle on the shores of Edinample, lighting up its whiteness against the surrounding trees.
  • The gentle rays glanced over his blond locks, turning them into glistening sliver and gold.
  • It stands towering over the landscape, the sun's rays glancing off the polished superstructure to dance upon the gently rippling waters of the canal below.
reflect, flash, gleam, glint, glitter, glisten, glimmer, shimmer, flicker, sparkle, twinkle
rare coruscate
2.2 [with object and adverbial of direction] (In ball games) deflect (the ball) slightly with a delicate contact: he glanced the ball into the corner of the net
More example sentences
  • He met the free kick with his head and glanced the ball into the net.
  • His cross was nicely placed for the young striker to glance the ball past the goalie, raise the spirits of the home support and signal the charge for the final period of the game.
  • In fact, the defence was missing en mass when he got on the end of a well-timed cross to glance the ball home with his head at the near post.
2.3 [with object] Cricket Deflect (the ball) with the bat held slantwise; play such a stroke against (the bowler): Simpson glanced Statham’s fourth ball
More example sentences
  • Eventually he did get to three figures, glancing King to the fine-leg fence.
  • Shuffled across his stumps to glance, but the ball brushed leg stump to give him his fifth wicket.


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1A brief or hurried look: I stole a glance at John
More example sentences
  • The briefest of glances in her direction found her to be still looking at me, still silent.
  • This is but a brief glance back into how our ancestors managed to live without electricity or many of the mod cons we have today.
  • I waited for a few girls to come down the stairs, smiled distractedly at their approving glances, and then hurried upstairs.
peek, peep, brief look, quick look;
Scottish  keek;
French coup d'œil
informal gander
British informal dekko, shufti, butcher's
Australian/New Zealand informal squiz, geek
2 archaic A flash or gleam of light: fish ... sporting with quick glance, Show to the Sun their wav’d coats
flash, gleam, glitter, glint, glimmer, shimmer, flicker, sparkle, twinkle
3 Cricket A stroke with the bat’s face turned slantwise to deflect the ball slightly.
Example sentences
  • The short boundaries looked even smaller with his glances, off-drives and swings through midwicket.
  • He was a strong left-handed batsman who scored all around the wicket, but had a preference to square cuts, hooks and deft leg glances.


at a glance
Immediately upon looking: she saw at a glance what had happened
More example sentences
  • Divide the number of calls by the number of operators, and you could see at a glance how ‘efficiently’ your centre was operating.
  • Even experts can't tell if they are real or fake at a glance.
  • Use bold type for emphasis, use spaces between lines and points so that it's easy to see the essence of your message at a glance.
at first glance
When seen or considered briefly and for the first time: good news, at first glance, for frequent travellers
More example sentences
  • As would be expected, however, there is much more going on within the picture than is apparent at first glance.
  • A grotesque formation vase catches the attention of guests at first glance.
  • This seems to offer little guidance at first glance, however some common ground is starting to emerge.
on the face of it, on the surface, at first sight, to the casual eye, to all appearances, to go/judge by appearances;
apparently, seemingly, outwardly, superficially, it seems (that), it would seem (that), it appears (that), it would appear (that), as far as one can see/tell, by all accounts, so it seems, to all intents and purposes
glance one's eye
archaic Look briefly: he had glanced his eye over all the folios of my copy
More example sentences
  • ‘Indeed, your example is an unfortunate one for your argument,’ said Holmes, taking the paper and glancing his eye down it.
  • At first glance my eye goes up to that ball of flame on the right.
  • As he glanced his eye rapidly over the fatal list, he was much moved at finding there the names of more than one who had some claim to consideration in the army.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'rebound obliquely'): probably a nasalized form of obsolete glace in the same sense, from Old French glacier 'to slip', from glace 'ice', based on Latin glacies.

Words that rhyme with glance

advance, Afrikaans, à outrance, chance, dance, enhance, entrance, faience, France, lance, mischance, outdance, perchance, prance, Provence, stance, trance
Definition of glance in:
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There are 2 main definitions of glance in English:

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glance 2 Line breaks: glance
Pronunciation: /ɡlɑːns/


[mass noun]
A shiny black or grey sulphide ore of lead, copper, or other metal: lead glance
More example sentences
  • It is usually assumed that when lead glance is opened up with nitric and tartaric acids and water, the silver remains in solution as nitrate.


Late Middle English: from German Glanz 'brightness, lustre'; compare with Dutch glanserts 'glance ore'.

Definition of glance in:
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