1. A type of spotlight, used in photography, that illuminates a subject from behind.
2. A light that amplifies the brightness of an LCD screen by illuminating it from behind.
tr.v. back·light·ed or back·lit (-lĭt′), back·light·ing, back·lights
To light from behind: The photographer backlit the subject for a dramatic effect.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.