- 1[transitive] lighten something to reduce the amount of work, debt, worry, etc. that somebody has synonym lessen equipment to lighten the load of domestic work The measures will lighten the tax burden on small businesses.
- 2[intransitive, transitive] to become or make something become brighter or lighter in colour The sky began to lighten in the east. lighten something Use bleach to lighten the wood.
- 3[intransitive, transitive] to feel or make somebody feel less sad, worried or serious synonym cheer lighten (up) My mood gradually lightened. lighten something (up) She told a joke to lighten the atmosphere.
- 4[transitive] lighten something to make something lighter in weight Phrasal Verbslighten up
BrE BrE//ˈlaɪtn//; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪtn//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they lighten
BrE BrE//ˈlaɪtn//; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪtn//he / she / it lightens
BrE BrE//ˈlaɪtnz//; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪtnz//past simple lightened
BrE BrE//ˈlaɪtnd//; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪtnd//past participle lightened
BrE BrE//ˈlaɪtnd//; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪtnd//-ing form lightening
BrE BrE//ˈlaɪtnɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//ˈlaɪtnɪŋ//