Definition of glimpse in English:


Line breaks: glimpse
Pronunciation: /glɪm(p)s


  • 1A momentary or partial view: she caught a glimpse of the ocean
    More example sentences
    • Trying to look past the dull conversation, I caught a glimpse of red from the corner of my eye.
    • The only thing is during all of this, I caught a glimpse of his face and he looked so familiar.
    • She peeked round the corner and caught a glimpse of a police car going slowly down the street.
    brief look, quick look; glance, peek, peep; sight, sighting; French coup d'œil
  • 1.1A brief insight or indication: during the interview he offered a behind-the-scenes glimpse of television
    More example sentences
    • Shot mostly among red brick suburbs, the film also offers brief glimpses of the modern concrete city centre.
    • There will be brief glimpses into what the future holds as well.
    • Sometimes youth football offers a glimpse of the present, not the future.


[with object] Back to top  
  • 1See or perceive briefly or partially: he glimpsed a figure standing in the shade
    More example sentences
    • Everyone here has heard the stories - or maybe, been on a convoy through the green zone, briefly glimpsed the way that other half lives.
    • We briefly glimpse him alive and well before he is blown from his horse by a shell that destroys a significant part of his face.
    • He briefly glimpses a woman running down the wooded path, but she is far away and disappears around a corner before he can look more closely.
    catch sight of, catch/get a glimpse of, see briefly, get a sight of, notice, discern, spot, spy, sight, note, pick out, make out
    British informal clock
    literary espy, descry
  • 1.1 [no object] archaic Shine or appear faintly or intermittently: glow-worms glimpsing in the dark
    More example sentences
    • Rare rays of sunlight glimpsed through the clouds, shining onto the square.


Middle English (in the sense 'shine faintly'): probably of Germanic origin; related to Middle High German glimsen, also to glimmer.

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Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody