Quintessence meaning

kwĭn-tĕsəns
The pure, highly concentrated essence of a thing.
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The pure, concentrated essence of anything.
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A thing that is the most perfect example of its type; the most perfect embodiment of something.
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Quintessence is someone or something that is a classic example of a characteristic or persona.

When a person is a classic example of someone who is polite, this is an example of a person who is the quintessence of good manners.

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In ancient and medieval philosophy, the fifth and highest essence after the four elements of earth, air, fire, and water, thought to be the substance of the heavenly bodies and latent in all things.
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A form of dark energy due to a hypothetical scalar field that permeates all space, the energy density of which varies across space and time, in contrast to the cosmological constant.
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In ancient and medieval philosophy, the fifth essence, or ultimate substance, of which the heavenly bodies were thought to be composed: distinguished from the four elements (air, fire, water, and earth)
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The purest or most typical instance.

The quintessence of evil.

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The most nearly perfect or most typical manifestation of a quality or thing.
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The essence of a thing in its purest and most concentrated form.
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(alchemy) The fifth alchemical element, or essence, after earth, air, fire, and water.
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(physics) A hypothetical form of dark energy postulated to explain observations of an accelerating universe.
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Origin of quintessence

  • Middle English from Old French quinte essence fifth essence from Medieval Latin quīnta essentia (translation of Greek pemptē ousiā) Latin quīnta feminine of quīntus fifth penkwe in Indo-European roots Latin essentia essence essence

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Middle English, from Middle French, from Medieval Latin quinta essentia "fifth essence".

    From Wiktionary