the dark [singular] the lack of light in a place, especially because it is night

Are the children afraid of the dark?

in the dark All the lights went out and we were left in the dark.

animals that can see in the dark

What is the opposite of "in the dark"? "in the light"?

Eg: You may bump into objects if you run around in the dark. Go in the light?

2 Answers 2


Literally the opposite of "in the dark" is "in the light":

I moved out of the darkness and into the light

However, it isn't natural to say "I'm in the light" in the same way we say "I'm in the dark".

Darkness is an absence of light. We tend more often to refer to the kind of light we are in, for example:

Don't run around in the dark - you should switch the light on.

It happened in broad daylight.

"Go into the light" is grammatically correct, it just isn't as natural. In fact, people are more likely to say "let's move out of the dark" than they are "let's move into the light". Also, "go towards the light" has idiomatically come to be a statement encouraging someone to give themselves over to death - not to take their own life, but to stop fighting an inevitable death. It is based on the idea that people close to death can see a tunnel of light.

  • My Vietnamese mother tongue, "go into the light" (literally translated from Vietnamese) is idiomatic in Vietnamese. Not sure, why "go into the light" is not idiomatic in English?
    – Tom
    Feb 17, 2020 at 15:53
  • also, you may live in a big house where some rooms have light & some don't because you want to save energy so you don't want to turn the light on. You have to say to the child "play in the light not in the dark" right? not sure why "in the light" is not idiomatic? How to express in this situation?
    – Tom
    Feb 17, 2020 at 16:01
  • @Tom "Go into the light" is grammatically correct, it just isn't natural in most situations. I've added some detail about that.
    – Astralbee
    Feb 17, 2020 at 16:16
  • 2
    The dictionary say " Bring it into the light so I can see it." so it's not too bad (oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/…)
    – Tom
    Feb 17, 2020 at 16:21
  • I suppose it is taken for granted that a room will be artificially lit after dark. If it's necessary to specify, we would speak of doing something 'with the light on' or 'in a lighted room'. Feb 17, 2020 at 16:22

The most common way to refer to the opposite of being in the dark is 'in the know'.

But note that 'in the dark' in the form of your examples "we're in the dark just as much as you are." and "College officials were kept in the dark about the investigation" express a metaphorical darkness, not actual absence of light. So your "You may bump into objects if you run around in the dark" is of a slightly different meaning as it seems to talk about literal darkness.

So you could say "College officials were in the know about the investigation, while students were kept in the dark". But this would not work for your own example - "You may bump into objects if you run around in the dark. Go in the know" would not be idiomatic.

  • I updated my question, please modify your answer
    – Tom
    Feb 17, 2020 at 14:37
  • 1
    There are 'animals that can see in the dark' but also 'animals that can see in daylight'. And then there are animals that can do both.
    – kaipmdh
    Feb 17, 2020 at 14:45
  • I accidentally copied the wrong text. So what is the opposite of "in the dark" literally?
    – Tom
    Feb 17, 2020 at 14:59

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