A great-grandmother with her descendant.
- The definition of descendant is moving down either physically or in a family line.
An example of descendant used as an adjective is the phrase "descendant escalator" which means an escalator that goes down.
- Descendant is defined as an offspring of a particular person.
An example of a descendant is a man being the great, great grandson of someone.
Origin of descendantMiddle English descendaunt ; from Old French descendant ; from Classical Latin descendens, present participle of descendere: see descend
- a person who is an offspring, however remote, of a certain ancestor, family, group, etc.
- something that derives from an earlier form
- One whose descent can be traced to a particular individual or group: a descendant of Queen Victoria; descendants of a prize-winning horse.
- Something derived from a prototype or earlier form: Today's bicycles are descendants of the earlier velocipede.
- In astrology, the point of the ecliptic or the sign of the zodiac that sets in the west at the time of a person's birth or other event.
The adjective may be spelled either with ant or ent as the final syllable (see descendent). The noun may be spelled only with ant.
- (literally) One who is the progeny a specified person, at any distance of time or through any number of generations.
- The patriarch survived many descendants: five children, a dozen grandchildren, even a great grandchild.
- (figuratively) A thing that derives directly from a given precursor or source.
- This famous medieval manuscript has many descendants.
- (biology) A later evolutionary type.
- Dogs evolved as descendants of early wolves.
- (linguistics) A language that is descended from another.
- English and Scots are the descendants of Old English.
- (linguistics) A word or form in one language that is descended from a counterpart in an ancestor language.
From Middle English dessendaunte, from Middle French, from Latin dēscendēns, present participle of descendere, from dē + scandere (“to climb, ascend”).
descendant - Legal Definition