Definition of evanesce in US English:



[no object]literary
  • Pass out of sight, memory, or existence.

    • ‘Like the lovers seated on the grass outside, the music evanesces along the narrowing vista between the trees, and the fountain flows only to ebb.’
    • ‘There was also the folk memory of real poverty, which might be rapidly evanescing, but still persisted in most families.’
    • ‘Do we not now live in our various national enclaves, or seem to, on the cusp of a present evanescing even as it supposedly materializes before our very eyes?’
    • ‘I felt Luca's hand rub in a circular motion on my back and the sobs suddenly evanesced.’
    • ‘The English once had a continuity myth involving the ancients in the story of the eponymous Trojan, Brutus, but this fantasy had largely evanesced by the time Pope briefly toyed with the idea of reviving it.’
    • ‘A cold breeze hit her hip as the heat of his touch evanesced.’
    • ‘In Untitled, 2000, the artist's forehead dissolves into an expansive, pastel checkerboard pattern that in turn evanesces into light.’
    • ‘Murray begins his survey at 800 B.C., arguing that innovation before then had been more species-wide than individual and had tended largely to evanesce rather than become established, other than in China.’
    • ‘His position may seem attractively irenic; but its appeal derives from its vagueness and ambiguity, and evanesces under closer scrutiny.’
    • ‘One of the greatest linguists of the day, Noam Chomsky, believes that the complexity of English has many advantages, signposting roots and connections while allowing subtleties that might otherwise evanesce.’
    • ‘Angel looked as though she were about to laugh for a moment, then the expression evanesced and was replaced with a more hopeless one.’
    • ‘It was natural, therefore, that Indian loyalty could not be allowed to evanesce.’
    • ‘It was almost eight fifteen and the clouds were full of an orange glow as it slowly evanesced into the blue sky.’
    decrease, decline, diminish, dwindle, shrink, contract, taper off, tail off, subside, slacken, droop, sink, ebb, dim, fade, fade away, grow faint, lessen, dissolve, peter out, wind down, fall off, attenuate, be on the way out, abate, fail, recede, slump, flag, atrophy, become weak, weaken, give in, give way, melt away, deteriorate, crumble, wither, disintegrate, degenerate, evaporate, collapse, go downhill, draw to a close, vanish, die out
    declining, on the decline, decreasing, diminishing, dwindling, shrinking, contracting, tapering off, tailing off, subsiding, slackening, drooping, sinking, ebbing, dimming, fading away, growing faint, lessening, dissolving, petering out, winding down, falling off, attenuating, on the way out, abating, failing, receding, slumping, in a slump, in remission, flagging, atrophying, weakening, giving way, melting away, deteriorating, in a state of deterioration, crumbling, withering, disintegrating, degenerating, evaporating, collapsing, drawing to a close, vanishing, dying out, obsolescent, moribund
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Mid 19th century: from Latin evanescere, from e- (variant of ex-) ‘out of’ + vanus ‘empty’.