blink

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English blynken, blenken, from Old English *blincan (suggested by causative verb blenċan ("to deceive"; > English blench)), from Proto-Germanic *blinkaną, a variant of *blīkaną ‎(to gleam, shine). Cognate with Dutch blinken ‎(to glitter, shine), German blinken ‎(to flash, blink), Danish blinke ‎(to flash, twinkle, wink), Swedish blinka ‎(to flash, blink, twinkle, wink). Related to blank, blick, blike, bleak.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

blink ‎(third-person singular simple present blinks, present participle blinking, simple past and past participle blinked)

Example of a blinking human eye (slow-motion)
  1. To close and reopen both eyes quickly.
    The loser in the staring game is the person who blinks first.
  2. To flash headlights on a car at.
    An urban legend claims that gang members will attack anyone who blinks them.
  3. To send a signal with a lighting device.
    Don't come to the door until I blink twice.
  4. To flash on and off at regular intervals.
    The blinking text on the screen was distracting.
  5. (hyperbolic) To perform the smallest action that could solicit a response.
    • 1980, Billy Joel, “Don't Ask Me Why”, Glass Houses, Columbia Records
      All the waiters in your grand cafe / Leave their tables when you blink.
  6. To shut out of sight; to evade; to shirk.
    to blink the question
  7. (Scotland) To trick; to deceive.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Jamieson to this entry?)
  8. To wink; to twinkle with, or as with, the eye.
    • Alexander Pope
      One eye was blinking, and one leg was lame.
  9. To see with the eyes half shut, or indistinctly and with frequent winking, as a person with weak eyes.
    • Shakespeare
      Show me thy chink, to blink through with mine eyne.
  10. To shine, especially with intermittent light; to twinkle; to flicker; to glimmer, as a lamp.
    • Wordsworth
      The dew was falling fast, the stars began to blink.
    • Sir Walter Scott
      The sun blinked fair on pool and stream.
  11. To turn slightly sour, or blinky, as beer, milk, etc.
  12. (video games) To teleport, mostly for short distances

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Noun[edit]

blink ‎(plural blinks)

  1. The act of very quickly closing both eyes and opening them again.
  2. (figuratively) The time needed to close and reopen one's eyes.
  3. (computing) A text formatting feature that causes text to disappear and reappear as a form of visual emphasis.
    • 2007, Cheryl D. Wise, Foundations of Microsoft Expression Web: The Basics and Beyond (page 150)
      I can think of no good reason to use blink because blinking text and images are annoying, they mark the creator as an amateur, and they have poor browser support.
  4. A glimpse or glance.
    • Bishop Hall
      This is the first blink that ever I had of him.
  5. (UK, dialect) gleam; glimmer; sparkle
    • Wordsworth
      Not a blink of light was there.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Walter Scott to this entry?)
  6. (nautical) The dazzling whiteness about the horizon caused by the reflection of light from fields of ice at sea; iceblink
  7. (sports, in the plural) Boughs cast where deer are to pass, in order to turn or check them.
  8. (video games) An ability that allows teleporting, mostly for short distances

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Related terms[edit]


Danish[edit]

Verb[edit]

blink

  1. imperative of blinke

Dutch[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

blink

  1. first-person singular present indicative of blinken
  2. imperative of blinken

German[edit]

Verb[edit]

blink

  1. Imperative singular of blinken.
  2. (colloquial) First-person singular present of blinken.

Norwegian Bokmål[edit]

Noun[edit]

blink n

  1. lightning

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

Verb[edit]

blink

  1. imperative of blinke