Definition of convergent in English:



  • 1Coming closer together; converging.

    ‘a convergent boundary’
    ‘there are a number of convergent reasons for the growth of interest in pragmatics’
    • ‘Ocean-floor basalts are extruded along mid-ocean ridges that define divergent boundaries, whereas island-arcs are produced as the ocean floor is subducted at convergent plate boundaries.’
    • ‘The mechanics of mountain belts along convergent plate boundaries are often considered to be analogous to that of a wedge of snow or soil in front of moving bulldozer.’
    • ‘Most of the world's active above-sea volcanoes are located near convergent plate boundaries where subduction is occurring, particularly around the Pacific basin.’
    • ‘By contrast, the thermal history of a typical convergent basinal setting is characterized by low geothermal gradients caused by the depression of heat flow during collision of plate margins.’
    • ‘In a convergent fault, two plates crash into each other: one plate is forced upwards, one is then ‘subducted’ underneath the other.’
    • ‘The volcanically active trail-ends are preferentially located near divergent plate boundaries and are rare near convergent boundaries.’
    • ‘Instead, the whole of the Southern Uplands terrane shares clay mineral characteristics with the convergent, load-induced foreland basin sequence of the southern Lake District, the Windermere Supergroup.’
    • ‘The paper slams the campaign in its leader: it is described variously as narrow, chunky, banal, bland, convergent and played too much for the benefit swing voters.’
    • ‘The boundary of a tissue undergoing convergent extension is maintained by the behavior of cells at the boundary.’
    • ‘Services include convergent billing, administration and customer care, business information systems and customer relationship management.’
    1. 1.1Psychology (of thought) tending to follow only well-established patterns.
      • ‘Note that nearly all formal education is concentrated on convergent thinking and the concept of the "Right Answer"!’
      • ‘It is well documented that exposure to the dissenting views of a minority fosters broader thought around an issue and stimulates divergent rather than convergent search.’
      • ‘I argue that the relationship between past success and convergent thinking may depend on the attributions that groups generate to explain their shared success.’
      • ‘He remarks that successful advertising comes from two contrasting styles of problem-solving, what psychologists have called convergent vs. divergent thinking.’
      • ‘From a psychological perspective, this research seems to indicate that past success may give rise to convergent thinking in groups.’
      converging, meeting, joining, uniting, intersecting
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2Biology Relating to or denoting evolutionary convergence.
      ‘one of the most bizarre examples of convergent evolution concerns the so-called periodical cicadas’
      • ‘However, the extent to which these distinguishing features truly indicate natural relationships, or whether they have originated by convergent evolution, is not currently known.’
      • ‘Otherwise, if not by chance nor by shared ancestry, the similarities may only be explained by convergent evolution.’
      • ‘That kind of independent ‘invention,’ known as convergent evolution, is a sign of a trait's evolutionary value.’
      • ‘There are several cases of convergent evolution between marsupials and placental mammals, in which the two animals have evolved to fill the same ecological niche in different parts of the world.’
      • ‘The most amazing fact about the evolution of flight is the extent of convergent evolution between the three main groups that evolved it (again, the pterosaurs, birds, and bats).’
  • 2Mathematics
    (of a series) approaching a definite limit as more of its terms are added.

    • ‘A method of summation is called regular, if it sums every convergent series to its ordinary sum.’
    • ‘Although they have often been dismissed as logical nonsense, many attempts have also been made to dispose of them by means of mathematical theorems, such as the theory of convergent series or the theory of sets.’
    • ‘The question was to determine the exact value of the convergent infinite series obtained by summing the reciprocals of the squares of the positive integers.’
    • ‘The standards of rigour that he set, defining, for example, irrational numbers as limits of convergent series, strongly affected the future of mathematics.’
    • ‘We now seek solutions with a convergent power series in the open interval,’


Early 18th century: from late Latin convergent- ‘inclining together’, from the verb convergere (see converge).