Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Acronyms, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to Stars: Star names


a. A celestial body that generates light and other radiant energy and consists of a mass of gas held together by its own gravity in which the energy generated by nuclear reactions in the interior is balanced by the outflow of energy to the surface, and the inward-directed gravitational forces are balanced by the outward-directed gas and radiation pressures.
b. Any of the celestial bodies visible at night from Earth as relatively stationary, usually twinkling points of light.
c. Something regarded as resembling such a celestial body.
2. A graphic design having five or more radiating points, often used as a symbol of rank or merit.
a. An artistic performer or athlete whose leading role or superior performance is acknowledged.
b. One who is highly celebrated in a field or profession.
a. An asterisk (*).
b. The star key on a telephone: For customer service, press star.
5. A white spot on the forehead of a horse.
6. A planet or constellation of the zodiac believed in astrology to influence personal destiny.
7. stars The future; destiny. Often used with the.
1. Outstanding or famous, especially in performing something: a star researcher; a star figure skater.
2. Of or relating to a star or stars.
v. starred, star·ring, stars
a. To ornament with stars.
b. To award or mark with a star for excellence.
2. To mark with an asterisk.
3. To present or feature (a performer) in a leading role.
1. To play the leading role in a theatrical or film production.
2. To do an outstanding job; perform excellently.
have stars in (one's) eyes
To be dazzled or enraptured, as with romantic love.
see stars
To experience bright, flashing sensations, as from a blow to the head.

[Middle English sterre, from Old English steorra; see ster- in Indo-European roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


  1. The dipper burned like a strand of diamonds on a sable cloak —Joseph Wambaugh
  2. The divisions between the rings [of Saturn] are furrows in which the satellites rotate … like sheepdogs running around the flock to keep it compact —Italo Calvino
  3. The evening star flickered like a lamp just lit —Willa Cather
  4. In the dark vault of the sky, the stars hung like muted dots of leaden silver —Heinrich Böll

    This lovely simile is the first sentence of Böll’s short story, The Ration Runners.

  5. Jupiter displays two equatorial stripes like a scarf decorated with interwoven embroideries —Italo Calvino
  6. A lovely star … large as the full moon —Jaroslav Seifert
  7. The Milky Way stands out so clearly that it looks as if it had been polished and rubbed over for the holidays —Anton Chekhov
  8. A star as bright as day —Anon Christmas ballad, probably dating to Middle Ages
  9. Starlight fell like rain —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  10. Stars are dropping thick as stones —Sylvia Plath
  11. (Tonight) the stars are like a crowd of faces moving round the sky —Wallace Stevens
  12. The stars burned steadily, like the lights of far-off ships —Marjory Stoneman Douglas
  13. The stars clung like snow crystals in the black sky —Ross Macdonald
  14. Stars … cold, like pieces of ice —Paige Mitchell
  15. Stars … dissolved like bubbles —Katherine Mansfield

    The simile in full context: “In the sky some tiny stars floated for a moment and then they were gone —they were dissolved like bubbles.”


  16. Stars gleamed and winked like searching fireflies —Robert Traver
  17. Stars … huge, like daisies —May Sarton
  18. Stars large as asters —Mary Stewart
  19. Stars … like countless diamond lamps —Hans Christian Andersen
  20. (At night) stars rise like the bubbles of the drowned —Yehuda Amichai
  21. The stars seemed to look down like a thousand winking eyes —William Humphrey
  22. The stars which at midnight looked like a spillway of broken pearls, did not shine at this hour; they were holes of light, like eye squints in black masks —Paul Theroux
  23. Twinkle, twinkle, little star how I wonder what you are, up above the world so high, like a diamond in the sky —Anne Taylor
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
On her side, directly Katharine got into his presence, and the sense of the stars dropped from her, she knew that any intercourse between people is extremely partial; from the whole mass of her feelings, only one or two could be selected for Henry's inspection, and therefore she sighed.
She has seen that the tears are not dry on These cheeks, where the worm never dies, And has come past the stars of the Lion, To point us the path to the skies -- To the Lethean peace of the skies -- Come up, in despite of the Lion, To shine on us with her bright eyes -- Come up, through the lair of the Lion, With love in her luminous eyes."
The Sun's rim dips; the stars rush out: At one stride comes the dark; With far-heard whisper, o'er the sea.
It is a noble art, for nothing can be hidden from you, when once you understand the stars.' The plan pleased him much, and he soon became such a skilful star-gazer, that when he had served out his time, and wanted to leave his master, he gave him a glass, and said, 'With this you can see all that is passing in the sky and on earth, and nothing can be hidden from you.'
"I think Miss Leeson has just as much right to name stars as any of those old astrologers had."
The God veileth his beauty: thus hidest thou thy stars. Thou speakest not: THUS proclaimest thou thy wisdom unto me.
Under that dense tangle of branches one would be out of sight of the stars. Even were there no other lurking danger--a danger I did not care to let my imagination loose upon--there would still be all the roots to stumble over and the tree-boles to strike against.
Hosts of stars are visible to-night, though their brilliancy is eclipsed by the splendour of the moon.
My lords who have dropped from the Stars should know," he answered with a quick look.
Before me the sun, moon, and stars, Behind me the phoenix doth clang; In the morning I lash my leviathans, And I bathe my feet in Fusang.
THERE grew a fragrant rose-tree where the brook flows, With two little tender buds, and one full rose; When the sun went down to his bed in the west, The little buds leaned on the rose-mother's breast, While the bright eyed stars their long watch kept, And the flowers of the valley in their green cradles slept; Then silently in odors they communed with each otber, The two little buds on the bosom of their mother.
whose stars are these: -- `Lovely Teygata, and dark-faced Electra, and Alcyone, and bright Asterope, and Celaeno, and Maia, and Merope, whom glorious Atlas begot....'