The Meaning of Vivid: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of vivid? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word vivid, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word vivid mean?

According to Collins English Dictionary and the American Heritage Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, the word vivid is an adjective that means clear and detailed, or bright in color. Vivid is two syllables – viv-id, and the pronunciation of vivid is vɪvɪd.

Many things can be vivid, including a vivid description, vivid green, vivid recollection, vivid lifelike images, a vivid account, a vivid personality, a vivid feeling of shame, vivid colors, a vivid bright color or striking color, vivid mental images that evoke the freshness of immediate experience, a vivid intense blue, vivid illustrations that have a powerful impact, a vivid way, vivid sensuous stimuli, a vivid verse, a vivid period of my life, vivid first impressions, vivid creative solutions, a vivid description of the scene, vivid plumage, vivid pictorial poetry, vivid prose, a vivid lifelike portrait, vivid expostulations, vivid brilliant tapestries, a vivid blue sky, a vivid reminder, a vivid bright dress, vivid brilliant images with a high degree of saturation in a striking manner, vivid lively colors, vivid memories of confusion of World War II, the vivid appearance of life, vivid colours, vivid nightmares, a vivid impression, a vivid portrait of London, vivid mental faculty, the vivid green of flourishing vegetables, vivid exceptional cleanliness, the vivid colors of the rainbow, a vivid child, a vivid flower picture of waterlilies, vivid previous night’s dreams that portrayed the image of his death, a vivid mystery, a vivid mental picture of an innocent boyish face, the vivid mind of a child survivor, vivid new moving image, vivid set pieces, vivid characters, and more. 

Many other languages also contain words that mean vivid. You may notice that many of these words look and sound similar to the word vivid. These are called cognates, which are words and phrases that mean the same thing as well as look and sound similar between languages. These are often formed when two words have the same root word or language of origin like Latin or Greek. This list of translations of vivid is provided by Word Sense.

  •  Catalan: vívid‎
  •  Turkish: berrak‎, açık‎, net‎
  •  Finnish: elävä‎, eloisa‎
  •  Portuguese: vívido‎
  •  Dutch: helder‎, gedetailleerd‎, krachtig‎
  •  French: vivide‎
  •  Spanish: vívido‎ (masc.)
  •  Scottish Gaelic: beò‎
  •  Japanese: 鮮烈‎ (せんれつ, senretsu), 鮮明‎ (せんめい, senmei), 鮮やか‎ (あざやか, azayaka)
  •  Mandarin: 生動‎, 生动‎ (shēngdòng), 鮮烈‎, 鲜烈‎ (xiānliè), 鮮明‎, 鲜明‎ (xiānmíng)
  •  German: lebendig‎, lebhaft‎
  •  Yiddish: בילדעריש‎
  •  Italian: chiaro‎ (masc.), limpido‎ (masc.)
  •  Russian: живо́й‎, я́сный‎

What is the origin of the word vivid?

According to Etymonline, the word vivid has been used since c17 and comes from the French vivide. This comes from the Latin vividus/Latin vīvidus and the Latin vivus, vivere, . One can add the suffixes ly and ness to form the related words vividly (adv.) and vividness (n.)

How can the word vivid be used in a sentence?

There are many different ways a person can use the word vivid in a sentence. Using words in a sentence is a great way to memorize their definition and expand your vocabulary. Try using this word of the day in a sentence today! Below are a few examples of the word vivid to get you started.

Trent’s words took us on a vivid journey. The new moving images of the angels in his stories were almost like seeing an actual picture.

Her vivid traumatic memories came to life in her previous night’s dreams. Kat was a likeable person, but her night terrors of the Atlantic made her struggle to keep men around. 

He made a vivid, strong impression of exceptional clearness on his first day. He spoke with a confident clarity to his emotions. He was a new force in work environments.

What are synonyms and antonyms of the word vivid?

There are many different words and phrases that a person can use in place of the word vivid. These are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same meaning as another word or phrase. Synonyms are useful to know if you are trying not to repeat yourself in conversation or a written work, as well as if you are trying to expand your vocabulary. This list of synonyms for the word vivid is provided by Power Thesaurus

  •  descriptive
  •  powerful
  •  photographic
  •  true to life
  •  dramatic
  •  lively
  •  lurid
  •  lifelike
  •  colorful
  •  energetic
  •  luminous
  •  picturesque
  •  dazzling
  •  bold
  •  glaring
  •  dynamic
  •  resplendent
  •  expressive
  •  bright
  •  glowing
  •  clear
  •  strong
  •  graphic
  •  spirited
  •  psychedelic
  •  intense
  •  pictorial
  •  realistic
  •  distinct
  •  radiant
  •  evocative
  •  gay
  •  flamboyant
  •  colourful
  •  lucid
  •  shining
  •  striking
  •  detailed
  •  rich
  •  chromatic
  •  deep
  •  faithful
  •  garish
  •  sharp
  •  vibrant
  •  gaudy
  •  scintillating
  •  eloquent
  •  brilliant
  •  impressive

There are also numerous different words that mean the opposite of the word vivid. These opposite words are called antonyms. Antonyms are another great tool to use to expand your English language vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word vivid is provided by Power Thesaurus as well. 

  •   as black as midnight
  •  cowardly
  •  dim
  •  confused
  •  dull
  •  murky
  •  sombre
  •  boring
  •  bland
  •  vague
  •  dark as night
  •  colourless
  •  as black as a dog’s guts
  •  black as coal
  •  flat
  •  abstruse
  •  obscure
  •  black as night
  •  black as midnight
  •  difficult to comprehend
  •  ambiguous
  •  bleak
  •  bleached
  •  as black as the ace of spades
  •  gloomy
  •  uncolorful
  •  cloudy
  •  black as the ace of spades
  •  as black as pitch
  •  weak
  •  dismal
  •  fuzzy
  •  cheerless
  •  black as a dog’s guts
  •  sad
  •  colorless
  •  somber
  •  pale
  •  faded
  •  depressed
  •  black as pitch
  •  as black as coal
  •  soul-crushing
  •  deadly
  •  characterless
  •  as black as night
  •  lacklustre
  •  dark
  •  as dark as night
  •  dreary

Overall, the word vivid means clear and detailed as well as bright in color. This word is Latin in origin. 


  1. Vivid definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary 
  2. vivid | Origin and meaning of vivid | Online Etymology Dictionary 
  3. vivid: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense 
  4. Vivid synonyms – 783 Words and Phrases for Vivid | Power Thesaurus 
  5. Vivid antonyms – 587 Opposites of Vivid | Power Thesaurus