Try Our Apps


Words You've Been Using Wrong


[dis-uh-peer] /ˌdɪs əˈpɪər/
verb (used without object)
to cease to be seen; vanish from sight.
to cease to exist or be known; pass away; end gradually:
One by one the symptoms disappeared.
(of a person) to vanish under suspicious circumstances:
The dictator's outspoken opponent disappeared that evening, shortly after midnight.
verb (used with object)
to cause to disappear:
The magician then disappeared the card.
to kidnap or arrest and then imprison or kill (a political opponent) without due process of law.
noun, (used with a plural verb)
the disappeared, political opponents who are caused to disappear, as by kidnapping:
the disappeared of Argentina.
Origin of disappear
First recorded in 1520-30; dis-1 + appear
Related forms
nondisappearing, adjective
undisappearing, adjective
Synonym Study
1. Disappear, fade, vanish suggest that something passes from sight. Disappear is used of whatever suddenly or gradually goes out of sight: We watched him turn down a side street and then disappear. Fade suggests a (complete or partial) disappearance that proceeds gradually and often by means of a blending into something else: Colors in the sky at sunrise quickly fade. Vanish suggests complete, generally rapid, and often mysterious disappearance: A mirage can vanish as suddenly as it appears. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for disappeared
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • One of the stars in the constellation of the Pleiades is said to have disappeared.

    Philothea Lydia Maria Child
  • Finally he disappeared, and, as it seems, embraced the profession of a sailor.

    Brave and Bold Horatio Alger
  • The old cities of Egypt have disappeared from the face of the earth.

    Ancient Man Hendrik Willem van Loon
  • Thrones have toppled and their vast empires have disappeared.

  • Like the tomb of William the Conqueror at Caen, it disappeared long ago.

British Dictionary definitions for disappeared


(intransitive) to cease to be visible; vanish
(intransitive) to go away or become lost, esp secretly or without explanation
(intransitive) to cease to exist, have effect, or be known; become extinct or lost: the pain has disappeared
(transitive) (esp in South and Central America) to arrest secretly and presumably imprison or kill (a member of an opposing political group)
Derived Forms
disappearance, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for disappeared



early 15c., disaperen, from dis- "do the opposite of" + appear. Earlier was disparish (early 15c.), from French disparaiss-, stem of disparaître. Related: Disappeared; disappearing; disappears. Slang disappearing act is originally of magic shows; in figurative sense of "getting away" first attested 1913.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for disappeared

Word Value for disappeared

Scrabble Words With Friends