An example of condescend is if you explain something to an adult with slow, deliberate words as if you were talking to a child.
- to descend voluntarily to the level, regarded as lower, of the person one is dealing with; be graciously willing to do something regarded as beneath one's dignity; deign
- to deal with others in a proud or haughty way
- Obs. to make concessions; agree; assent
Origin of condescendMiddle English condescenden ; from Old French condescendre ; from Ecclesiastical Late Latin condescendere, to let oneself down, condescend ; from Classical Latin com-, together + descendere, descend
intransitive verbcon·de·scend·ed, con·de·scend·ing, con·de·scends
- To do something that one regards as beneath one's social rank or dignity; lower oneself. See Synonyms at stoop1.
- To behave in a patronizing or superior manner toward someone: Viewed as a popularizer more than a scholar, he was condescended to by his academic colleagues.
Origin of condescendMiddle English condescenden, from Old French condescendre, from Late Latin condēscendere : Latin com-, intensive pref.; see com– + dēscendere, to descend; see descend.
(third-person singular simple present condescends, present participle condescending, simple past and past participle condescended)
- (intransitive) To come down from one's superior position; to deign (to do something).
- (intransitive) To treat (someone) as though inferior; to be patronizing (toward someone); to talk down (to someone).
- 1868, Horatio Alger, Struggling Upward, ch. 3:
- "This is the pay I get for condescending to let you go with me."
- This is a catenative verb that takes the to infinitive.
- In sense “to talk down”, the derived participial adjective condescending (corresponding adverb condescendingly) are more common than the verb itself.