- to go or pass from a higher to a lower place; move or come down: to descend from the mountaintop.
- to pass from higher to lower in any scale or series.
- to go from generals to particulars, as in a discussion.
- to slope, tend, or lead downward: The path descends to the pond.
- to be inherited or transmitted, as through succeeding generations of a family: The title descends through eldest sons.
- to have a specific person or family among one's ancestors (usually followed by from): He is descended from Cromwell.
- to be derived from something remote in time, especially through continuous transmission: This festival descends from a druidic rite.
- to approach or pounce upon, especially in a greedy or hasty manner (followed by on or upon): Thrill-seekers descended upon the scene of the crime.
- to settle, as a cloud or vapor.
- to appear or become manifest, as a supernatural being, state of mind, etc.: Jupiter descended to humankind.
- to attack, especially with violence and suddenness (usually followed by on or upon): to descend upon enemy soldiers.
- to sink or come down from a certain intellectual, moral, or social standard: He would never descend to baseness.
- Astronomy. to move toward the horizon, as the sun or a star.
- to move downward upon or along; go or climb down (stairs, a hill, etc.).
- to extend or lead down along: The path descends the hill.
Origin of descend
Examples from the Web for descended
A fog of conspiracy—of logic against logic, as Orwell put it—has descended on every major event in the war.Digital Doublethink: Playing Truth or Dare with Putin, Assad and ISIS
Christopher Dickey, Anna Nemtsova
November 16, 2014
Since then, a black miasma of recursive vengeance has descended upon Iraq.Whatever You Do Someone Will Die. A Short Story About Impossible Choices in Iraq
Nathan Bradley Bethea
August 31, 2014
The war Bolotov called for had descended on a Ukrainian Interior Ministry base.The Sky Explodes Over Luhansk, and Kiev Blames the Separatists
June 4, 2014
The women belonged to the Pa-O tribe and wore red head coverings as a reminder of the dragon from which they are descended.A Little Too Off the Beaten Path in Burma
June 2, 2014
Mindless rigidity has descended upon the land, from the schoolhouse to the White House to, sometimes, your house.Government Has Made America Inept
Philip K. Howard
May 4, 2014
He descended the slope, and sat down in the shade of a broad-leaved tree.Brave and Bold
They all descended from the hill and came on slowly towards us.Explorations in Australia
She then descended, and pausing at the great landing, heard other steps descending also.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
Ah, could I have descended, could I have come down, ere he fled!The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
Blackness had descended on them again, except for the dull glow of K.'s old pipe.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
- (also tr) to move, pass, or go down (a hill, slope, staircase, etc)
- (of a hill, slope, or path) to lead or extend down; slope; incline
- to move to a lower level, pitch, etc; fall
- (often foll by from) to be connected by a blood relationship (to a dead or extinct individual, race, species, etc)
- to be passed on by parents or ancestors; be inherited
- to sink or come down in morals or behaviour; lower oneself
- (often foll by on or upon) to arrive or attack in a sudden or overwhelming waytheir relatives descended upon them last week
- (of the sun, moon, etc) to move towards the horizon
Word Origin and History for descended
c.1300, from Old French descendre (10c.) "descend, dismount; fall into; originate in," from Latin descendere "come down, descend, sink," from de- "down" (see de-) + scandere "to climb," from PIE root *skand- "jump" (see scan (v.)). Sense of "originate" is late 14c. in English. Related: Descended; descending.