lighten - definition in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online (US)

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English definition of “lighten”

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lighten

verb uk   /ˈlaɪ.tən/  us   /-t̬ən/

lighten verb (BECOME BRIGHT)

[I] to become less dark: The sky had lightened and there were breaks in the clouds.
Opposite

lighten verb (MAKE LESS HEAVY)

lighten sb's burden, load, etc. to make a difficult situation or responsibility easier: Getting a new assistant will lighten (= reduce) the workload considerably.

lighten verb (MAKE PALE)

[T] to make something lighter: The sun always lightens my hair.

lighten verb (MAKE/BECOME LESS SERIOUS)

[I or T] to (cause to) become happier and less worried: His mood lightened after the phone call. He tried to lighten the atmosphere by telling a joke.
(Definition of lighten from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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